Our board

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Patrick Lunn | Chairperson

On 6 November 2014, Patrick was first appointed Chairperson of the Legal Aid Commission for a term of three years. The Minister for Justice re-appointed Patrick for a further three year term commencing on 6 November 2017.

Patrick graduated from the University of Tasmania with the combined degrees of Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws in 1995.
Patrick has practiced in commercial litigation since 1995 where his practice has included debt recovery, estate disputes, partnership, bankruptcy and insolvency litigation, professional negligence claims and residential and commercial tenancy disputes.

Patrick became a member of the board of management of Plane Tree Studio Inc. in 1997 and has been a Chair of its Board of Management since 1998.

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Susie Winter | Acting Director

Susie is currently the Acting Director of the Legal Aid Commission.
Susie was admitted to practice as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Tasmania and the High Court of Australia in 1991 after completing her Bachelor of Arts and Law at the University of Tasmania.

Susie joined the Legal Aid Commission of Tasmania in 1998 after having worked in private practice for a number of years, before moving into the government sector in other roles. She has worked predominantly in the Commission’s early intervention programs and in 2016 was appointed as the southern based Manager of the Advice and Legal Services program.

Susie is also a qualified Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner and is involved in providing family mediation services via the Commission’s Family Dispute Resolution Program.

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Julia Higgins

On 2 May 2017, the Minister for Justice appointed Julia Higgins to the Board for a term of three years.

Julia graduated from the University of Tasmania with a combined degree of Bachelor Commerce and Bachelor of Laws in 2001. Julia has practiced family law at the Launceston law firm of Bishops since August 2002. Julia specialises in all the areas of family law (Children and Financial matters) as well as appearing in the child protection jurisdiction.

Julia is a committee member of the Family Law Practitioners Association of Tasmania. She is currently Vice-Chair of the Launceston Women’s Shelter. In the past, she has been the Northern Representative on the Law Council of Tasmania, and was for many years President of the Northern Young Lawyers Committee.

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Naomi Walsh

On 27 July 2017, the Minister for Justice appointed Naomi Walsh to the Board for a term of three years.

Naomi has a Bachelor of Business and a Masters of Business from the University of Tasmania. Naomi is currently the Executive Manager of Virieux Group and Rosevears Developments and brings business, managements, risk management, corporate governance and financial expertise to the Board.

Naomi has been an Executive Manager of a hospitality group and also a finance manager for a road construction company. She is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

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Gavin Wailes

On 15 January 2018, the Minister for Justice appointed Gavin Wailes to the Board.

Gavin graduated from the University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Commerce in 2001, has a Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Management and is a member of CPA Australia.

Gavin is currently the Acting Director of Finance with the Department of Justice and has previously worked for the Departments of Treasury and Finance, Police, Fire and Emergency Management and for the Tasmania Prison Service in a variety of accounting and management roles.

Last updated: 23/11/2018