Who Are We?

Australian Lawyers for Human Rights Inc (ALHR) was established in 1993, and incorporated as an association in NSW in 1998 (ABN 76 329 114 323).

Australian Lawyers for Human Rights is an association of legal professionals active in practising and promoting awareness of international human rights standards in Australia.

ALHR has a national membership of Australian lawyers, barristers, judicial officers, legal academics and law students, with active National, State and Territory committees and national and specialist thematic committees.

ALHR seeks to utilise its extensive experience and expertise in the principles and practice of international law and human rights law in Australia in order to:

  • Promote and support lawyers practice of human rights law in Australia.
  • Promote Federal and State laws across Australia that comply with the principles of international human rights law.
  • Engage with the United Nations in relation to Australian human rights violations.
  • Engage internationally to promote human rights and the rule of law.

Through the provision of training, education, publications, CLE courses, conferences, seminars and mentoring, ALHR assists members to continue to develop their knowledge of human rights law and incorporate human rights principles into their areas of legal practice in Australia.


The Committee

Kerry Weste - President

Kerry was admitted as a solicitor and barrister in South Australia in 1998 and has been a member of the ALHR National Committee since 2014, including a two year term as ALHR Vice-President. She has practiced in South Australia, London and Sydney as a criminal defence solicitor and as a Senior Legal Officer for the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions and has over 24 years experience as an advocate.

Kerry has worked for top tier private firms and currently works in the civil society and NGO sector. She has extensive experience working within the policy and law reform space, in domestic and international advocacy campaigns and engaging with the media. Kerry has a long held interest in Children's rights and juvenile justice and is a registered contributor with the International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO). She was a recipient of the The Children's Interests Bureau Prize at Flinders University. Kerry also Co-Chairs ALHR's Children's Rights Subcommittee and Co-Convenes the Human Rights for NSW Alliance.

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Natalie Wade - Vice President

Natalie Wade is ALHR Vice-President and Chair of our Disability Rights Subcommittee. Named by the Law Council of Australia as the 2016 Australian Young Lawyer of the Year and awarded Young Lawyer of the Year for South Australia and Australia in 2016 for her work on the South Australian Child Protection Systems Royal Commission and contribution to law reform for people with disabilities, Natalie has a well-respected legal background in international human rights law and law reform.

Natalie received a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor Commerce from the University of Adelaide and a Master of Laws (Legal Practice) from the Australian National University. As a leader in disability rights and reform, Natalie was the founding Chairperson of Australian Lawyer’s for Human Rights’ Disability Rights Subcommittee and has worked individual complaints to the Committee for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Since 2015, Natalie has been member of the Every Women, Everywhere Campaign which advocates for an international treaty on violence against women and girls. In that role, Natalie assisted in drafting the Implementation and assessment memo for the campaign.

Natalie has dedicated much of her time to research relating to participation of individuals with communication disabilities in courts. Her research advocated for the implementation of judicial training on obtaining evidence from witnesses with communication disabilities. Following the introduction of the SA Disability Justice Plan, Natalie prepared a comparative analysis, published in the Alternative Law Journal, of the law reform in South Australian and Commonwealth jurisdictions to evaluate their effectiveness in upholding the international human rights of people with communication disabilities.

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Sangeeta Sharmin - Secretary

Sangeeta is currently a practising solicitor in Sydney. She graduated with a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Science (Psychology) double degree from the Australian National University and is currently studying her Masters in Law (International Law). She has had her work published in The Journal of Legal Pluralism and is currently working on her Masters thesis project. She has volunteered in a number of organisations focusing on the rights of refugees, migrants, women, Indigenous Australians and prisoners. After completing two internships overseas, at the Legal Resources Centre in Cape Town and the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs in New York, Sangeeta commenced working at Ken Cush & Associates, a civil litigation firm in Canberra, as a Senior Associate. Sangeeta also volunteers at the ACT Law Society's Legal Advice Bureau.

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Katherine Hinton - Treasurer

Katherine is a Chartered Accountant with over 20 years Finance experience who has a strong interest in human rights and social justice. Katherine is currently the Finance Manager at SNAICC - National Voice for our Children which represent the interests of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

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Valerie Heath - Executive Management Committee

Valerie is a barrister at the NSW Bar (called 1994) and an Australian legal practitioner (since 1990). She has a Bachelor of Jurisprudence and Bachelor of Laws from UNSW, a Graduate Diploma (PLT) from UTS and a Master of Laws from the University of Sydney. Valerie joined ALHR as a member in 2018 and has enjoyed working with the incomparable Tamsin Clarke and Nicholas Stewart and other tireless ALHR contributors on submissions and public presentations for ALHR since that time.

She practices in insurance, administrative and commercial law, professional liability, professional and sports licensing and disciplinary matters and in general practice. She has advised and appeared in disability and racial discrimination claims and in judicial review proceedings against government and statutory authorities. She is a past Secretary and past Vice-President of NSW Women Lawyers and a past member of a NSW Bar Professional Conduct Committee.

Valerie has been a member of the NSW Bar Accessibility Panel since 2019. Valerie has a keen interest in the protection of civil and political rights of the individual and transparency and accountability of government. In particular, Valerie is interested in the human rights implications of data collection, data matching, surveillance and algorithmic decision-making and the need for strong, independent, investigative corruption watchdogs and other checks on the abuse of power.

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Naomi Gould - Executive Management Committee

Naomi Gould is a senior solicitor at Canberra Community Law. She currently works in the Social Security and Housing Law programs. Naomi has regularly argued the ACT Human Rights Act over her years working at Canberra Community Law and is a strong advocate for the implementation of human rights at the local level. She has many years experience working as a community lawyer in both Australia and the USA. She previously worked as a senior economic rights and patients rights attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Project in San Jose, California. Prior to that, she was with the NSW Legal Aid Commission based in the Fairfield office. She has previously been active with Amnesty International Australia and was also a seconded solicitor to Kingsford Legal Centre while working at what was then known as Freehills, where she started her legal career.

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Madeleine Bridgett - Executive Management Committee

Madeleine Bridgett is a barrister in Sydney, Australia, specialising in human rights and international law. She has also been admitted to the Bar of England and Wales, and in 2011 was awarded the Hardwicke Scholarship and the Peter Duffy Human Rights Scholarship from The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn. She spent a year working in the Niger Delta of Nigeria, West Africa, for the Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales (BHRC), where she fearlessly advocated for the rights of children and vulnerable adults whilst actively promoting the rule of law. Madeleine was part of the legal team who successfully prosecuted a number of cases involving child labour and child abuse. Following this Madeleine worked at the European Court of Human Rights where she was responsible for preparing draft reports and decisions on cases brought before the Court regarding admissibility.

Madeleine holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice from City Law School (formerly the Inns of Court School of Law) (UK), Postgraduate Diploma in Law (UK)(Distinction), Master of Social Work (UNSW, Australia) and Bachelor of Social Work (UNSW, Australia). She was awarded the Head of School Prize, University of Brighton, UK in 2008 and the Oxford University Press Prize, University of Brighton, in 2009. Madeleine has published work in both national and international journals and has presented at a number of conferences globally. In 2010 she was selected by The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn to debate at the English Speaking Union National Competition and the Cambridge IV International Debating Competition.

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Nicholas Stewart - Executive Management Committee

Nicholas Stewart is a partner at Dowson Turco Lawyers, a boutique and prominent LGBTI law firm in Sydney. He was formerly an intellectual property lawyer at Minter Ellison and Corporate Counsel at Singtel Optus. Nicholas has acted as an instructing lawyer and as an advocate in the Australian Crime Commission, the Local Court of NSW, the Children’s Court of NSW, the District Court of NSW and the Federal Court of Australia.

Nicholas takes carriage of complex cases involving human rights matters and currently he is acting for a group of NSW Police officers who claim homosexual discrimination, bullying and vilification while employees of the NSW Police Force. Nicholas is also the lawyer for Alan Rosendale, a gay bashing victim of the 1980s who believes his assaulters were part of an organised group of law enforcement members who engaged in systematic gay bashings during that time.

Nicholas is a Director of Rainbow Families NSW, Vice President of the New Theatre Newtown, on the LGBTI sub-committee of Unharm Australia, and a pro bono lawyer at the NSW Inner City Legal Centre. Between 2006 and 2012 Nicholas was the President of Caretakers Cottage, Bondi, and during part of this time he also worked as a policy and projects officer in the NSW Government.

In 2009 Nicholas was awarded the Elizabeth Hastings Memorial Human Rights Award and the UTS:LAW Alumni Association Prize at the University of Technology, Sydney.

Nicholas chairs the ALHR LGBTI sub-committee with Kathryn Cramp. Together Nicholas and Kathryn champion LGBTI human rights and law reform.

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Anthony Hallal - Executive Management Committee

In addition to his role on the Executive Management Committee at ALHR, Anthony is a lawyer at Hall & Wilcox and a tutor with the Law Faculty at Monash University. He is also on the editorial board for one of the International Law Association's official publications. Anthony has a Master of Laws (LLM) in Transnational Law from King's College London, a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from Monash University and a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights Theory from Monash University. During his LLM at King's College London, Anthony specialised in human rights law. He was awarded the university's Prize for the Best Student on the LLM in Transnational Law in recognition of ranking first in his subjects and first in the LLM cohort overall. Anthony has also been awarded the Sir Owen Dixon Prize for International Law (supported by the International Commission of Jurists), the LexisNexis Prize for Research and Writing, the Monash Global Scholarship on two occasions, and the Nicholas Auden International Study Scholarship.

Anthony consistently contributes to Hall & Wilcox's pro bono practice, and he has previously contributed to the human rights work of other organisations including the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law and the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences. Anthony has authored and co-authored a number of articles and he has presented his human rights research at conferences around the world. Anthony's interests and experience cover a broad range of areas within the general field of international human rights law, including non-discrimination rights, LGBTI+ rights, children's rights, business and human rights, rights to social security, and the human rights of vulnerable individuals in the context of the criminal justice system, medical treatment and employment.

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Naomi Gould - Human Rights Act Co-Chair

Naomi Gould is a senior solicitor at Canberra Community Law. She currently works in the Social Security and Housing Law programs. Naomi has regularly argued the ACT Human Rights Act over her years working at Canberra Community Law and is a strong advocate for the implementation of human rights at the local level. She has many years experience working as a community lawyer in both Australia and the USA. She previously worked as a senior economic rights and patients rights attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Project in San Jose, California. Prior to that, she was with the NSW Legal Aid Commission based in the Fairfield office. She has previously been active with Amnesty International Australia and was also a seconded solicitor to Kingsford Legal Centre while working at what was then known as Freehills, where she started her legal career.

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Natalie Wade - Disability Rights Co-Chair

Named by the Law Council of Australia as the 2016 Australian Young Lawyer of the Year and awarded Young Lawyer of the Year for South Australia and Australia in 2016 for her work on the South Australian Child Protection Systems Royal Commission and contribution to law reform for people with disabilities, Natalie has a well-respected legal background in international human rights law and law reform.

Natalie received a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor Commerce from the University of Adelaide and a Master of Laws (Legal Practice) from the Australian National University. As a leader in disability rights and reform, Natalie was the founding Chairperson of Australian Lawyer’s for Human Rights’ Disability Rights Subcommittee and has worked individual complaints to the Committee for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Since 2015, Natalie has been member of the Every Women, Everywhere Campaign which advocates for an international treaty on violence against women and girls. In that role, Natalie assisted in drafting the Implementation and assessment memo for the campaign.

Natalie has dedicated much of her time to research relating to participation of individuals with communication disabilities in courts. Her research advocated for the implementation of judicial training on obtaining evidence from witnesses with communication disabilities. Following the introduction of the SA Disability Justice Plan, Natalie prepared a comparative analysis, published in the Alternative Law Journal, of the law reform in South Australian and Commonwealth jurisdictions to evaluate their effectiveness in upholding the international human rights of people with communication disabilities.

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Valerie Heath - Freedoms Chair

Valerie is a barrister at the NSW Bar (called 1994) and an Australian legal practitioner (since 1990). She has a Bachelor of Jurisprudence and Bachelor of Laws from UNSW, a Graduate Diploma (PLT) from UTS and a Master of Laws from the University of Sydney. Valerie joined ALHR as a member in 2018 and has enjoyed working with the incomparable Tamsin Clarke and Nicholas Stewart and other tireless ALHR contributors on submissions and public presentations for ALHR since that time.

She practices in insurance, administrative and commercial law, professional liability, professional and sports licensing and disciplinary matters and in general practice. She has advised and appeared in disability and racial discrimination claims and in judicial review proceedings against government and statutory authorities. She is a past Secretary and past Vice-President of NSW Women Lawyers and a past member of a NSW Bar Professional Conduct Committee.

Valerie has been a member of the NSW Bar Accessibility Panel since 2019. Valerie has a keen interest in the protection of civil and political rights of the individual and transparency and accountability of government. In particular, Valerie is interested in the human rights implications of data collection, data matching, surveillance and algorithmic decision-making and the need for strong, independent, investigative corruption watchdogs and other checks on the abuse of power.

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Dr Natalia Szablewska - Business and Human Rights Co-Chair

Natalia has 20 years’ experience spanning the public sector, governmental and non-governmental organisations and academia in five countries. She is currently based in Aotearoa New Zealand and has academic affiliations in Auckland, Sydney and Phnom Penh. She has published widely and presented internationally for academic and non-academic audiences (over 100 outputs). She specialises in public international law, with a particular focus on human rights, and her most recent projects examine the linkages between business and human rights, modern slavery and sustainable development.

Natalia's professional experience includes working in a Human Rights NGO in Moscow (Russian Justice Initiative) litigating before the European Court of Human Rights, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (UK), the Welsh Assembly Government and the British House of Commons. She has worked for over 10 years in Cambodia, including in developing first in Cambodia Master’s Programme in Human Rights (at Cambodian Mekong University), and since 2016 has been an Adjunct Professor with the Centre for the Study of Humanitarian Law, a Cambodian human rights academic centre, based at the Royal University of Law and Economics.

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Johanna Byrne - Indigenous Rights Co-Chair

Johanna was admitted as a solicitor in 2017 in Western Australia and currently works at Rae & Partners Lawyers, Launceston in the commercial team. She was the National Indigenous Law Student of the Year in 2016.
Her interests in Human Rights originated prior to her studying law when she worked with vulnerable members of the community who were caught up within the criminal justice system. Johanna’s honours thesis was on section 32 of the Mental Health (Forensic Provisions) Act 1990 NSW. She is particularly interested in Indigenous rights and the rights of those people who suffer from mental health issues.

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Patrick Lucarnus - Indigenous Rights Youth Co-Chair

Patrick, a proud Aboriginal (Nunga) man, is Youth Co-Chair of the ALHR Indigenous Subcommittee. Having graduated from his Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) in 2020, he is currently going into his penultimate year of Law (LL.B) at the University of Sydney. Patrick also works as a paralegal for the Litigation and Financial Restructuring and Insolvency teams at Norton Rose Fulbright. In his time at University, he has received the Bernard Lee Scholarship and Sydney Scholars Award, as well as serving on the Sydney University Business Society in 2018 and Sydney University Law Society Executive in 2020.

Patrick is a strong advocate for Indigenous education and reconciliation, and is devoted to tackling racial inequality in the workforce. He has worked, and continues to be a mentor, for the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME), which seeks to achieve educational parity by providing cultural identity and vocational pathway support to Indigenous high school students.

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Nicholas Stewart - LGBTI Rights Co-Chair

Nicholas Stewart is a partner at Dowson Turco Lawyers, a boutique and prominent LGBTI law firm in Sydney. He was formerly an intellectual property lawyer at Minter Ellison and Corporate Counsel at Singtel Optus. Nicholas has acted as an instructing lawyer and as an advocate in the Australian Crime Commission, the Local Court of NSW, the Children’s Court of NSW, the District Court of NSW and the Federal Court of Australia.

Nicholas takes carriage of complex cases involving human rights matters and currently he is acting for a group of NSW Police officers who claim homosexual discrimination, bullying and vilification while employees of the NSW Police Force. Nicholas is also the lawyer for Alan Rosendale, a gay bashing victim of the 1980s who believes his assaulters were part of an organised group of law enforcement members who engaged in systematic gay bashings during that time.

Nicholas is a Director of Rainbow Families NSW, Vice President of the New Theatre Newtown, on the LGBTI sub-committee of Unharm Australia, and a pro bono lawyer at the NSW Inner City Legal Centre. Between 2006 and 2012 Nicholas was the President of Caretakers Cottage, Bondi, and during part of this time he also worked as a policy and projects officer in the NSW Government.

In 2009 Nicholas was awarded the Elizabeth Hastings Memorial Human Rights Award and the UTS:LAW Alumni Association Prize at the University of Technology, Sydney.

Nicholas chairs the ALHR LGBTI sub-committee with Kathryn Cramp. Together Nicholas and Kathryn champion LGBTI human rights and law reform.

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Georgia Burke - LGBTI Rights Co-Chair

Georgia has been involved with ALHR as either a student or practitioner since 2013. In 2015/2016 she spent twelve months as a Tasmanian Co-Convenor, before moving on to the LGBTI Subcommittee, which she has proudly chaired with Co-Chair Nicholas Stewart since 2018. Since then, she has worked to pursue post-marriage equality law reform affecting the LGBTI community.

By day, Georgia is a family lawyer with Holmes Donnelly & Co Solicitors in Sydney, having relocated from Tasmania in early 2020. Georgia was an Out for Australia 30 under 30 award recipient in 2019 in recognition of her contributions to the LGBTI community, and Lawyers Weekly 30 under 30 Finalist in 2020 in the Family Law category. Georgia is also a member of the New South Wales Young Lawyers Family Law Committee.

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Jessica Bayley - Refugee Rights Co-Chair

Jessica was admitted as a lawyer in Western Australia in 2010 and became a registered Migration Agent in 2015. She is the Specialist Migration Lawyer at Law Access, which coordinates pro bono referrals in Western Australia, as well as the Communication and Education Manager at The Humanitarian Group, which provides migration and legal assistance to the culturally and linguistically diverse community in Western Australia. She is currently a Master of Law candidate at The University of Melbourne with a focus on international human rights law.

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Caitlin Caldwell - Refugee Rights Co-Chair

Caitlin is a solicitor and registered migration agent from Sydney. She currently volunteers at the Toongabbie Legal Centre and runs pro bono migration cases for organisations supporting refugees and asylum seekers in New South Wales. Caitlin graduated from Macquarie University with a Bachelor of International Studies and Laws, and from the Australian National University with a Master of Legal Practice. She has interned at the UNHCR and the Refugee Advice and Casework Service and is interested in issues concerning international refugee and asylum seeker policy.

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Kerry Weste - Children's Rights Co-Chair

Kerry is ALHR's current president and was admitted as a solicitor and barrister in South Australia in 1998 and has been a member of the ALHR National Committee since 2014, including a two year term as ALHR Vice-President. She has practiced in London and Sydney as a criminal defence solicitor and as a Senior Legal Officer for the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions and has 20 years experience as an advocate. Kerry has a long held interest in Children's rights and juvenile justice and currently co-chairs ALHR's Children's Rights Subcommittee. She is a registered contributor with the International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO) and was a recipient of the The Children's Interests Bureau Prize at Flinders University.

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Leanne Smith - Women and Girls' Rights Co-Chair

Leanne Smith is an Australian diplomat and lawyer with experience in political analysis, policy development, project management and implementation of international law, particularly in the field of human rights and rule of law. She has extensive experience working in the Australian judicial system, the NGO sector, regional human rights organisations, the Australian Government and the United Nations - across Southeast Asia, Africa, the Balkans and Afghanistan.

Leanne is currently the Director of the Whitlam Institute and an Adjunct Fellow,
Dean's Unit - School of Law at the Western Sydney University. Prior to this Leanne was based in New York where she served as Chief of Policy and Best Practice for the United Nations Departments of Peacekeeping Operations and Field Support where she led work on protection of civilians, conflict related sexual violence, women, peace and security, child protection, community engagement and peace building. She also led policy reform, guidance development, lessons learning and good practice for peacekeeping.

Leanne is a visiting fellow at the ANU's Asia-Pacific Centre for Diplomacy and UNSW's Human Rights Law Centre. She was a Religion, Diplomacy and International Relations Fellow, and Law and Public Policy Fellow at Princeton University and she holds a Masters in Public Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University.

Leanne has published a number of articles on Australian foreign policy and international human rights, rule of law and development as well as the United Nations and women, peace and security.

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Cassandra Bourke - Women and Girls' Rights Co-Chair

Cassandra was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of NSW in 2013 and later entered in the Register of Practitioners of the High Court of Australia. She has over ten years' experience in law, project management and international development, empowering women and girls to defend and advocate for their rights and to seek justice in circumstances where their rights have been abused.

Cassandra has worked in international institutions in France, including the European Parliament and the Council of Europe, as well as human rights/development organisations in Uganda and Togo. She is currently a lawyer at Anti-Slavery Australia, a specialist legal practice, research and policy centre, where she provides advice and support to survivors of human trafficking and modern slavery.

Cassandra holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from the University of Technology, Sydney and is currently undertaking a Master of Law and Development at the University of Melbourne with a focus on international human rights.

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Huong Tran - Environment and Human Rights Co-Chair

Huong works with the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions to strengthen collaboration between national human rights institutions and inter-governmental mechanisms in the Pacific and South-East Asia sub-regions to address the human rights impacts of environmental harm and climate change.

Huong holds a Master of Laws (LLM), Bachelor of Laws (LLB) and Bachelor of Science (Bsc) degree. Huong also holds a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice (GDLP) and is admitted as a lawyer in Australia.

Huong has provided legal and policy advice on climate displacement, environmental crimes and climate litigation. She has also worked on access to justice and human rights projects in the Asia Pacific region, including advocating for women's human rights and the protection of human rights defenders and refugees in the Asia Pacific region.

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Chris Caskey - Environment and Human Rights Co-Chair

Chris Caskey is an international lawyer and assistant manager with EY’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services team in Sydney, where he assists some of Australia’s largest clients in solving issues relating to human rights, sustainability and climate change. Prior to this role, Chris served as a legal consultant to the Centre for Civil and Political Rights (CCPR Centre) in Geneva, working towards enhancing NGO and other human rights defender engagement at the UN Human Rights Committee, as well as publishing research on the movement of human rights jurisprudence at the universal level.

Chris received his LLM (magna cum laude) in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights from the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights in 2020. During this period, he focussed his research on the intersection of climate change, human rights and migration, and published his thesis titled ‘Non-refoulement and environmental degradation: examining the entry points and improving access to protection’ with the Global Migration Centre, with the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) later that year.
Chris is a passionate advocate for improving access to protections afforded by the universal level in domestic contexts and is excited to see the developing relationship between climate change and human rights increase the urgency of public, private and multilateral responses to our climate crisis.

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Fia Hamid-Walker - Environment and Human Rights Co-Chair

Fia Hamid-Walker is a political ecologist, international human rights advocate, and Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL) scholar. In the past seven years, Fia’s career has spanned the legal, international development and humanitarian sectors. Fia has worked with community legal centres as a legal researcher and advocate specialising in police accountability and prisoners’ rights. Fia has also worked for Australian and Southeast Asian-based humanitarian and human rights organisations. Fia has completed a number of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade gender and poverty reduction projects in Indonesia. Fia worked with the Australian Red Cross as Vulnerable People in Emergencies project officer during the Black Summer bushfires 2019/20, and then as COVID-19 Response Program officer. Fia has contributed to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)’s Human Rights Translated – A Business Reference Guide 2016 with the Castan Centre for Human Rights.

Fia completed her Bachelor of law degrees from the University of Airlangga, Indonesia and Monash University, Australia. Fia has a Masters of Development Studies (First Class Honours) from the University of Melbourne. Fia is also an Impact and Evaluation Analyst with the Australian Conservation Foundation. Fia has written regularly for the Jakarta Post and a guest lecturer on International Law and Decolonisation at the Airlangga University, Indonesia.

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Annika Reynolds - Environment and Human Rights Youth-Chair

Annika Reynolds is a non-binary person emerging as a young leader in the environmental justice movement, advocating for an inclusive vision of climate justice. They are the Founder and CEO of GreenLaw, a youth-led law research institute that is empowering the next generation of lawyers to tackle the climate crisis. Annika is also a Board Director for Zero Emissions Noosa Inc, working at the grassroots level to support a just transition to a carbon zero society.

Annika is a published researcher on public interest environmental litigation, the human right to a healthy environment and the impact of climate change in the South Pacific. In 2019-2020, they were a Research Assistant to Dr Peter Burnett on Australia-first analysis into Federal Environment Department decision-making practices, and in 2020 were appointed a Legal Research Consultant to the Australian Conservation Foundation.

External to their legal advocacy, Annika is the Co-Founder of the Rainbow Bee-Eaters LGBTIQA+ Group, which is an ACT based network for Queer people to connect to community and nature. They are in their final year of a Laws (Hons)/International Security Studies Double Degree, with a minor in Korean, at the Australian National University. In 2021, Annika was also named The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG Scholar by the Pinnacle Foundation, for overcoming diversity and their leadership within the Queer community.

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Claudia Hodge - Environment and Human Rights Youth-Chair

Claudia Hodge is a fifth year Bachelor of Laws and Art Bachelor of Laws (Honours) / Bachelor of Arts (majoring in International Development Studies and minoring in Economics) at the Australian National University in Canberra. She is a Tuckwell Scholarship Recipient. Claudia is a Volunteer Research Assistant at the Environmental Defender’s Office (ACT) where she is involved in undertaking high-impact research projects on climate change and in assisting the EDO to prepare for litigation. She also currently works as a Law Interpretation Officer at the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

Claudia has been a Volunteer Paralegal at the Youth Law Centre, Legal Aid (ACT), a Peer Writer with the ANU Academic Skills Centre. In 2020 she undertook the East Yangon University Externship (Myanmar) focused on tourism, the environment and
sustainable development. In 2019 Claudia was an intern at the Attorney
General’s Department (Office of International Law) (AGD-OIL). In 2017 Claudia was selected for the Indigenous Community-Outreach Program (Mutitjulu, NT) in the remote Mutitjulu community in the Northern Territory. She has been an Academic Advisor at John XXIII College, ANU and a Student Ambassador for the ANU.

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VAVANT - Seeking EOIs - Economis, Social & Cultural Rights Chair

If you are interested in applying for this role please send an EOI including CV and cover letter to president@alhr.org.au

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Bethany Hender - ACT Convenor

Bethany Hender is the Employment and Discrimination Solicitor at the Women’s Legal Centre and has had previous roles at the ACT Human Rights Commission and the Australian Human Rights Commission. She has studied international human rights law at the University of Oslo in Norway and has a valuable understanding of the international human rights landscape. She brings important knowledge and insight into Australian’s piecemeal adoption and application of international human rights law, combined with firsthand experience of the consequences of governments and business not adhering to human rights principles.

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Sophie Trevitt - ACT Convenor

Sophie Trevitt is a Canberra based community lawyer who is Executive Officer at Change the Record, Australia’s only national Aboriginal led justice coalition of Aboriginal peak bodies and non-Indigenous allies. Sophie works every day to end the incarceration of, and family violence against, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Previously Sophie has been a lawyer at Canberra Community Law and prior to that worked in the Northern Territory with incarcerated children or children at risk of incarceration. She has worked in a wide range of areas in civil law including housing and homelessness, Centrelink, police accountability, discrimination and employment law. Sophie is a strong advocate for reforming the youth justice system to embrace restorative and therapeutic practices rather than the exist punitive model. As a progressive jurisdiction, and one with a Human Rights Act, Sophie sees the ACT as an important site of potential law reform. 

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Tayla Jaffe - ACT Convenor

Talya Jaffe is a fifth-year Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and Bachelor of International Relations Students at the Australian National University and she is due to graduate in the middle of 2022. Since learning about the criminal justice system in school, Talya developed a strong interest in advocating for, and learning more about, alternative means of sentencing to improve recidivism rates and protect those members of society who are more vulnerable from being exposed and stuck in the cycle of the prison system. Throughout her degree, she has been interested in advocating for such a reform, and ALHR provides a perfect platform to do so. Throughout Talya’s studies, she has maintained the goal of working in criminal law after her graduation and advocating for the rights of women and children, particularly focusing on juvenile crime and justice for victims of domestic violence.

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Manny Zhang - NSW Convenor

Manny Zhang
Manny is a graduate solicitor in the Family Law Early Intervention Unit at Legal Aid NSW and joined ALHR in 2018. Manny graduated with a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Arts from the Australian National University. Her Honours thesis focused on transitional justice and forced displacement in Colombia. Manny has interned with the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency, the Mexico City-based NGO, the Institute for Women in Migration, and Asylum Access Thailand, a refugee legal centre in Bangkok. She is particularly interested in refugee rights and racial and gender discrimination.

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Christina Nguyen - NSW Convenor

Christina Hey-Nguyen specialises in international and commercial law, foreign policy and international aid. She is currently an Assistant Director at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT) and has recently returned from a diplomatic posting to The Hague, Netherlands, where she advised the Australian government on a suite of international legal issues including international human rights law, refugee law and international criminal law. She was also Editor of the 2015 Australian Yearbook of International Law.

In The Hague, Christina represented Australia across six international courts and tribunals including at the International Court of Justice and at the International Criminal Court. In 2017 Christina founded the Women in International Law Network in the Netherlands, an informal network of over 200 female lawyers, judges and legal experts, advocating for gender equality.

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Nameeta Chandra - NSW Convenor

Nameeta is a lawyer with Holman Webb Lawyers in its Commercial Law practice. Prior to that Nameeta was a Senior Associate with Salvos Legal practising commercial litigation. Nameeta has also interned at Amnesty International Australia, and worked at the National Justice Project, the Australian Red Cross, the Office of Australian Information Commissioner and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. Nameeta currently volunteers at the Toongabbie Legal Centre. Nameeta graduated with a Bachelor of Laws / Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Western Sydney and Graduate Certificate in Human Rights from the University of Sydney. Nameeta is interested in issues concerning access to justice.

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Jessica Elliott - NSW Convenor

Jessica is the Research Director to the Hon T F Bathurst, Chief Justice of New South Wales and was previously his Judicial Clerk (Tipstaff). Jessica graduated with a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Arts from the Australian National University where she majored in human rights. She has also studied international human rights law at the University of Copenhagen. Jessica has previously been an academic observer assisting the Australian Delegation at the United Nations in New York, a paralegal at the Aboriginal Legal Service and a summer clerk at King & Wood Mallesons. She is particularly interested in issues relating to gender and Indigenous justice.

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Sarah Bartrim - NSW Convenor

Having completed her LLB at the University of Queensland in 2015, Sarah is currently working as a Solicitor with NTSCORP Limited, the native title service provider for NSW and the ACT. Sarah was selected for the Aurora Internship Program, completing a dual internship at Aboriginal Legal Services (NSW/ACT) Ltd and NTSCORP Limited in 2016, which sparked her ongoing interest in the Aboriginal legal sector and particularly in native title.

Sarah has previously volunteered with the Unrepresented Asylum Seekers Project through the Indooroopilly Uniting Church and Refugee and Immigration Legal Service (RAILS) and the Environmental & Planning Law Committee within NSW Young Lawyers.

Sarah has also been an active member of ALHR's Business and Human Rights Subcommittee since 2017.

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Isobel Milnes - NT Convenor

Isobel was admitted as a lawyer in 2012 in Western Australia and is now an Alice Springs based lawyer. She is currently working as an in house lawyer at an Aboriginal community controlled health service, and has previously worked for native title representative bodies and an Aboriginal land council. She is currently completing a Master of Policy and Politics at Deakin University. Isobel is interested in addressing social and economic inequalities through law, advocacy and policy change.

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Position Vacant - SA Convenor

If you are interested in applying for this role please send an EOI including CV and cover letter to president@alhr.org.au

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Bianca Failla - Vic Convenor

Bianca is the Human Rights Advocacy Coordinator at the Youth Disability Advocacy Service and a Lawyer and Disability Royal Commission Advocate at Villamanta Disability Rights Legal Service. Bianca provides legal representation and non-legal advocacy for disabled clients in situations where service providers, parents or government agencies have failed to act in accordance with their human rights. She is also responsible for the development and delivery of human rights training programs and advises on systemic issues affecting disabled young people in support of submissions to the Disability Royal Commission.

Previously, Bianca was a Lawyer at Victoria Legal Aid where she provided legal representation in child protection, youth crime and intervention order matters in the Children’s Court of Victoria. Prior to this, Bianca investigated and conciliated complaints involving unlawful discrimination, sexual harassment, and human rights breaches at the Australian Human Rights Commission.

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Emily McDonald - Vic Convenor

Emily McDonald is an Associate at an international commercial law firm, practicing in dispute resolution and regulatory investigations. Emily also has a strong pro bono practice, focusing on women's rights, refugee rights and disability rights. Prior to this role, Emily interned with the Office of the Co-Prosecutor at the United Nations Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials in Cambodia and volunteered as a legal caseworker in the Asylum Seeker Resource Center's Women's Clinic. Emily holds a Bachelor of Laws (with Honours) and a Bachelor of Arts from Monash University, where she was highly commended at the international Undergraduate Awards and published in the UNSW Law Journal's thematic issue 'Vulnerability and the Law'. As a New Colombo Plan Scholar, Emily completed a semester of her degree on exchange in Shanghai and interned in Hong Kong and Manila, assisting anti-fraud and anti-bribery investigations.

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Elise Almond - Vic Convenor

Elise is a lawyer at Villamanta Disability Rights Legal Service Inc.. She graduated with a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Criminology from Deakin University, taking a keen interest in human rights and international law. Elise’s work as a lawyer focuses primarily on protecting and advancing the rights of people with disability in NDIS, guardianship, administration and supervised treatment order matters. Elise is passionate about advancing human rights issues within Australia, with a particular interest on the rights of people with intellectual disability.

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Ella Furlong - QLD Convenor

Ella Furlong is a lawyer with Clayton Utz in its Commercial Litigation team and holds a Bachelor of Laws (Honours), with an academic specialisation in public international law, and a Bachelor International Relations from Bond University. Ella's past experience includes working both in-house and in boutique private practice, and interning at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia to work on the prosecution of General Ratko Mladic, one of the largest international criminal trials in modern history. She has also previously volunteered for Amnesty International Australia, knowmore Legal Service and Women's Legal Service Queensland. Ella is particularly interested in the access to justice for victims of sexual and gender-based violence, and its intersection with international criminal law.

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Johanna Byrne - Tas Convenor

Johanna was admitted as a solicitor in 2017 in Western Australia and currently works at Rae & Partners Lawyers, Launceston in the commercial team. She was the National Indigenous Law Student of the Year in 2016.
Her interests in Human Rights originated prior to her studying law when she worked with vulnerable members of the community who were caught up within the criminal justice system. Johanna’s honours thesis was on section 32 of the Mental Health (Forensic Provisions) Act 1990 NSW. She is particularly interested in Indigenous rights and the rights of those people who suffer from mental health issues.

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Alexandria Bishop - WA Convenor

Alexandria Bishop is an Associate in the International Arbitration Group at Clifford Chance. Alexandria has previously volunteered for community legal centres and was an active member of the Law Society of WA's Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Committee, Access to Justice Committee and the Aboriginal Incarceration and Justice Reinvestment Working Group. She was also the Access to Justice Committee representative for the Law Access Stakeholder Advisory Group, which informs the work of Law Access, an organisation that matches applications for pro bono legal assistance from vulnerable individuals to pro bono lawyers. Alexandria is passionate about addressing human rights issues and improving access to the justice system in Australia.

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Zubayr Abrahams - WA Convenor

Zubayr Abrahams holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and History from the University of Cape Town and a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from Murdoch University and is currently undertaking a Masters of Laws at the University of Western Australia. Zubayr is a disputes lawyer in the Projects, Infrastructure and Construction Group at MinterEllison and has volunteered with community legal centres including the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency in the Northern Territory. Zubayr has an interest in public law, international human rights law, international environmental law, global governance, socio-legal studies and legal and regulatory theory. He was awarded a Geneva International Human Rights Scholarship in 2014 and a Commonwealth New Colombo Plan Scholarship in 2015.

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Georgia Kalyniuk - WA Convenor

Georgia Kalyniuk is a final year student at Murdoch University due to graduate in 2019 with a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts in International Development with a minor in Asian Studies. Georgia also undertook studies in Social Development and Public Policy at City University in Hong Kong in 2016. During her studies at Murdoch, Georgia completed their Geneva Human Rights Law program and has been a long-time volunteer at SCALES Human Rights and Refugee Law Clinic. She has founded an alumni network for the Geneva program aimed to promote ongoing human rights law interest in law students and recent graduates. Georgia was previously the State Director of World Vision Australia’s youth movement in WA.
She is due to start as a graduate at Herbert Smith Freehills in 2020 and will be admitted as a lawyer in the WA. Georgia is particularly interested in business and human rights, refugee and migrant rights, and increasing the accessibility of the Australian justice system.

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