New President Of The Court Of Appeal Appointed

21 June 2022

The Victorian Government has appointed Justice Karin Emerton as the President of the Court of Appeal – the first female President in the Court’s history.

Boasting vast knowledge across the law, Justice Emerton’s appointment follows a distinguished career spanning over 30 years.

Justice Emerton has served as a judge of the Court of Appeal since 10 July 2018. Prior to this, she served as a judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria from 2009. During this time, Justice Emerton was a member of the Victorian Law Reform Commission from 2010 to 2011.

Before her appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice Emerton served as Crown Counsel for more than two years and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2007.

Justice Emerton was called to the Victorian Bar in 1993 and prior to that, worked as a solicitor with Blake Dawson Waldron, during which she completed a secondment to the Victorian Attorney-General’s Department Policy and Research Division.

Justice Emerton holds a Doctorate in Philosophy from the University of Paris 1 (Pantheon-Sorbonne), a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Sydney and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of New South Wales.

Justice Emerton’s appointment will begin on 16 July 2022 when she succeeds Justice Chris Maxwell AC who recently announced his retirement.

Justice Maxwell has served in the role of President of the Court of Appeal for 17 years, having been appointed in July 2005 and is known for his strong advocacy for individual rights.

Justice Maxwell commenced practice at the Bar in 1984 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1998. Prior to being appointed to the Court of Appeal, he was president of Liberty Victoria.

In June 2015, Justice Maxwell was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for eminent service to the law and to the judiciary.

Quotes attributable to Attorney-General Jaclyn Symes

“I congratulate Justice Emerton on her appointment and look forward to her continued contribution to Victoria’s justice system. She brings impressive legal experience and significant knowledge to the role of President, which puts her in an excellent place to make a strong contribution.”

“I would like to also extend my thanks to Justice Maxwell for his service and commitment. I wish him well for the next chapter of his life.”

“Our State is fortunate to have such extraordinary judicial officers willing to serve the people of Victoria by leading its highest court.”

Reviewed 21 June 2022

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