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Joelle Blackburn

Apart from being in charge of People & Culture at Moores, Joelle is a member of the Board.

After spending the early part of her career in “HR” (a term we hate), Joelle moved into consultancy. Then some guru told her that “a people management role in professional services is a real challenge and people management in a law firm is the most difficult of all”. Joelle likes a challenge.

We are delighted that she chose Moores and more delighted that she stayed. To both of her roles, Joelle brings strategic thinking and sound judgement, qualities we value.

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Andrew Boer

Andrew takes your call because that is what a savvy, no-nonsense lawyer does.

Commercial property and leasing can throw up difficult issues but Andrew is creative in devising strategies and possibilities to help clients achieve their goals. Then he follows through.

When Andrew gets a matter over the line for a client, he shares a High Five with the other members of his team. Such is his focus on delighting clients with results and on celebrating success, he has been known to High Five clients as well.

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Catherine Brooks

Workplace relations specialist Catherine Brooks represents employers across diverse industries, including the not-for-profit sector, manufacturing, construction, mining, transport and information technology. She takes an educative approach to her practice, focusing on training, early intervention and problem-solving.

Catherine’s enthusiasm, energy and determination are legendary, as is her absolute commitment to her clients, whether she’s representing them at the Fair Work Commission, developing a new enterprise agreement, or handling a tough union negotiation. “I’ve always believed that we in the legal profession are service providers,” she says. “Client service is paramount – legal expertise is a given, a minimum expectation.”

Catherine is accredited by the Law Institute of Victoria as a workplace relations specialist.

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Eric Choo

With a pragmatic and efficient approach, Eric and his team bring experience to a wide range of property transactions for both private and institutional clients. While meticulously attending to all the technical and regulatory requirements behind the scenes, Eric’s clients have confidence that their outcome will be achieved.

Eric’s knowledge and experience in matters of GST, duties and compliance are well regarded by clients and his peers. The Law Institute has also accredited Eric as a specialist in the field of property law.

Eric is a living example that the words “dependable”, “reliable” and “compliant” can be part of property law nomenclature.

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Marla Cowen

Marla has always been passionate about using her legal skills to assist For Purpose organisations. Beginning her career as a tax lawyer, she was drawn to pro-bono practice and became the team leader of the Homeless Persons’ Legal Clinic at Allens Linklaters.

Marla also worked as Legal Counsel at the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC), and gained further regulatory and tax experience as a director at the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

Her experience in Charity Law led her to Moores where she now heads the Not-For-Profit team and provides her clients with invaluable insights and perspective in relation to the regulators.

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Jennifer Dixon

Apart from accreditations from the SMSF Professionals Association of Australia as a SMSF specialist advisor and from the Law Institute of Victoria as a specialist in Wills and Probate, Jennifer has a formidable reputation across Australia as an estate planning and structuring lawyer. She is in demand as a speaker. Clients and referrers value her wisdom and insight.

Jennifer has the ability to “cut to the chase” in strategy formulation. When Jennifer is around, everyone’s expectation about a little bit of magic is raised a notch.

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Kate Drummond

Many clients consider Kate to be on their team. Kate is regularly called to add her technical knowledge and experience to large scale projects and developments. With apparent effortlessness, Kate can navigate clients through complex GST, leasing and procedural issues that touch and concern many property transactions.

Private, institutional and government clients acknowledge Kate’s ability to provide clear and practical advice without compromising detail and compliance.

With an astute, focused and caring approach it is no wonder that Kate is a popular team member for clients and colleagues.

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Krista Fitzgerald

When it comes to estate planning, Krista’s contribution is in high demand.

Like an elegant tisane, Krista has the ability to put us at ease. This results from a combination of:

  • her legal and drafting skill;
  • her calm, measured approach in ascertaining what the client wants to achieve; and
  • the constructive way she helps clients to discover solutions.

Krista deftly combines two sought after qualities: “expert lawyer” and “non-anxious presence”

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Luke Haley

Luke enjoys putting minds at ease by ensuring that any legal matter which causes sleepless nights for a client is handled with the utmost care. This is particularly important when you are dealing with the death of a loved one, or having the uncomfortable discussion about planning for your own death.

As an accredited specialist in Wills and Estates, Luke assists clients with estate planning, administration and litigation matters.

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Cecelia Irvine-So

Practice Leader Cecelia is a commercial lawyer specialising in privacy, regulatory compliance and education law.

Cecelia is in demand not only from clients, but also from industry bodies seeking her expertise for speaking engagements, training and contributions to boards and advisory groups. As well as being editor in chief of Portner Press’ Data Privacy Report, Cecelia holds two specialist accreditations.

In her role as a Moores leader, Cecelia has represented the firm in corporate fundraising. Cecelia’s demeanour is always professional, but with the slightest edge of quirky humour which makes Cecelia an engaging advisor and speaker.

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Jennifer Jackson

Dependable, reliable, intelligent and a team-player are three ways to describe Jennifer Jackson. You may say that they are four attributes, and you would be correct. You always get more with Jennifer!

By coming to the law later in life, Jennifer brings a wealth of life experience, and a practical and considered approach to handling legal matters. These are added attributes that make for an effective Estate Planning lawyer.

Jennifer is a valued and well-respected member of the Moores team. She is always willing to contribute and add her voice to discussions. Many of us can also attest to Jennifer’s voice being very melodious.

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Kaizad Kasad

The experts here know to put the emphasis on the first syllable in the first name and on the second syllable in the second name. The rest just call him “Kai”.

Kai heads up our business services team and manages our pricing functions. It was at BigLaw in Sydney that Kai kindled an interest in pricing for value. But he recognised that, while BigLaw might have professed interest in the theories, what was lacking was a commitment to the practice. So he searched for a committed practice, found Moores and moved to Melbourne. Now he is revelling in helping us get better at what we do, day by day.

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Bridgette Kennedy

Bridgette brings a unique combination of experience to the Property and Construction team at Moores.

Her many years of property experience, combined with previous experience in commercial, M&A and franchising transactions, allows her to provide commercially astute advice to her clients that takes into account the broader commercial context of the property transaction.

Bridgette’s extensive experience spans a wide range of sectors including education, social housing, childcare and residential projects.

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Michael Labiris

What do Italian cooking, Karaoke, and playing golf have in common? Possibly very little, unless you are Michael Labiris.

In addition to his proficiency with a 9-iron, Michael is an Accredited Specialist in Wills & Estates and Senior Lawyer at Moores. He is passionate about helping clients resolve disputes quickly and cost-effectively, working across a wide range of contested estate and family trust matters. He also practices extensively in estate planning, structuring and probate.

Michael’s knack of finding creative solutions, his ability to deal with complexity and his sensitive yet pragmatic approach endear Michael to his clients. Michael is outcome focused and quietly celebrates the advancement of his client’s interests with a tap of his golf cap…or a dance move on the Karaoke stage when he scores a big win in a litigious matter.

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Sarah Lacey

Sarah has joined Moores as an experienced Family Law practitioner having been a family lawyer for a number of years prior to her current appointment. With a double degree in Law and Arts (majoring in Psychology) Sarah knows the importance of working collaboratively with clients to achieve sustainable outcomes following a separation and divorce. She understands many clients are experiencing a very personal and difficult time and has the ability to explain in plain language complex legal issues.

Sarah volunteers at the Women’s Legal Service, enjoys reading and pilates. She loves spending quality time with family and friends and is proud of her strong Irish heritage, reinforced by a number of trips to visit family there.

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Lachlan McKenzie

Lachlan McKenzie studied for a double degree in law and behavioural science because he’s fascinated by what motivates people, and why they make the decisions they do.

Specialising in wills and estates, particularly estate litigation, Lachlan works regularly with clients who have recently lost a loved one and are going through a very difficult time in their lives.

Much of Lachlan’s time with clients is spent discussing their past and their relationships. He considers it a privilege to be able to assist them through what is often a deeply personal and cathartic process and to use his legal knowledge to help improve the quality of their life. Clients appreciate his common sense approach to their matters and his ability to explain in plain language what may be a complex legal issue.

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Rebecca Lambert-Smith

Rebecca holds the contribution to the community made by her For Purpose clients in high regard. For this reason, she takes great pleasure in smoothing the way for them - whether it be helping a new organisation get on its feet, complex structuring advice or resolving internal disputes. It’s also why she regularly serves on not for profits boards, including (at the moment) a tertiary institution and a public benevolent institution.

With Rebecca, you know where you stand. She gets quickly to the heart of the matter and then formulates a strategy. There is no obfuscation; no sitting on the fence. Some say that she is direct. They are probably right. However Rebecca is able to combine that quality with emotional intelligence. The result is that she maps a way forward that leaves clients feeling confident and with relationships strengthened.

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Jessica Latimer

Jessica has significant litigation experience across a range of complex commercial and general disputes. No matter the type of matter her clients are involved with, Jessica is valued for her direct and pragmatic style. Her depth of experience and strategic approach ensures her clients understand the litigation process and achieve positive outcomes.

Jessica now leads the elder abuse practice at Moores and focuses on recovering financial losses suffered by older clients. Jessica advises broadly on elder law matters including aged care and retirement village contracts. She also acts in professional negligence claims against financial advisors, lawyers, stockbrokers and other professionals.

Jessica regularly presents to professional advisors and at conferences. She is also a member of the Law Institute of Victoria Elder Law Committee.

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Emmalaura Messer

Senior lawyer Emmalaura Messer practices exclusively in family law. Whether the matter involves divorce, child support, spousal maintenance, intervention orders, superannuation splitting or any other aspect of family law, Emmalaura uses plain language to demystify the legal system. “I like my clients to be informed and in control of the process,” she says. “I give clients as much information as I can and guide them to help them make the best decisions they can.”

Emmalaura is equally passionate about volunteering, both as a lawyer and in other capacities. “I’ve volunteered at the Women’s Legal Service for more than five years now,” she says. “They help a lot of women who are disadvantaged or victims of violence. Family law is they bulk of what they do and they’re always in need of family lawyers. It’s good to be able to give back. And it’s great to be able to train and mentor the newer lawyers.”

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Lee Oliphant

Many would argue that managing Information and Communications Technology in a legal practice is fraught. Lee disagrees. He thinks that lawyers are open-minded, creative spirits, committed to risk-taking and collaboration.

Lee has been in his role at Moores for four years. His next big assignment is to deliver a practice management system that has nothing to do with recording time. Perhaps those lawyers at Moores are a little different after all.

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Greg Oliver

Senior family lawyer Greg Oliver guides clients through the often rough terrain of the family law landscape, helping them to develop realistic expectations and make the journey towards a positive new phase in their lives. “One of the things I enjoy immensely about my job is meeting people and learning about the often remarkable lives they have lived,” says Greg. “It’s a privilege to assist people and watch them grow during a time of transition.”

Away from work, Greg enjoys the peace and quiet that hiking offers. “I love the Victorian bush – Bright, Warrnambool, Mallacoota and the Grampians,” he says. “It’s great to go to a place that looks close to what it used to 200 years ago before we got to it.”

The changes not only in the natural landscape but also in the legal landscape prompt Greg to reflect on the practice of law and its place in the community. “I am intrigued and excited about how we can deliver the best possible service to clients and serve as valuable corporate members of society,” he says.

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Daniel Raso

Daniel brings solid experience to project and claims management for clients and to the resolution of general commercial, construction and development disputes. Daniel’s client base spans the education, Government, not-for-profit, transport, IT, development, and telecommunications sectors.

Naturally Daniel can help resolve complex disputes – but he adds most value by helping his clients avoid litigation in the first place through good project management. Daniel’s track record testifies to this approach.

Daniel lives out a strategic and pragmatic attitude which is complimented by his ability to catch a wave or fish (provided mother nature is co-operating). In all situations, it is a successful outcome that holds Daniel’s focus.

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Louise Ricardo

It is not unusual to hear a client say proudly “Louise is my lawyer”. Such is the nature of the relationships Louise builds with her clients.

Complex estate planning and superannuation advice is second nature to Louise. This enables her to share her knowledge with her clients and professional advisors in such a way that long term relationships are developed. Given the area of Louise’s expertise, it is not surprising that clients and advisors regularly contact Louise for advice and guidance. Reassurance, clarity or action is often the outcome of these discussions.

A calm, clear focussed approach is what you get with Louise. That’s why you want her as your lawyer.

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Skye Rose

Skye Rose is a gem of a lawyer, known for being a strong advocate and provider of practical and strategic workplace relations advice to her clients.

Skye can help resolve complex employment relations disputes - but she adds the most value by helping her clients to avoid litigation in the first place. Skye’s skills are not only recognised by clients, some recent awards demonstrate that she is a leader in the legal sector and is highly-respected by her peers.

Skye is in demand as a speaker and presents regularly on employment and child safety at conferences, workplaces and industry forums. She is also known for promoting charitable endeavours of several human rights organisations in Cambodia and Australia.

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Tony Rutherford

Tony’s educational and legal experience spans the globe, having started his career with an international law firm in New York before stints in Dubai and Perth.

Now leading the disability and NDIS practice at Moores, Tony has vast experience acting for NFP, government and commercial clients across a number of sectors, including healthcare, disability, education, utilities and transport. Tony helps clients navigate the complexities of the National Disability Insurance Scheme and other issues faced by healthcare and disability organisations. He has an intimate understanding of the challenges and risks faced by these sectors and is focused on providing clients with solutions in the form of clear advice.

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Andrew Sudholz

Andrew brings a strong relational and pragmatic approach to all that he does. Using his extensive experience and specialist knowledge in property law, Andrew brings a human element to property and commercial clients. Andrew’s view is that behind every transaction are people.

A particular focus for Andrew is the Aged Care and Community Living sector where he regularly works with corporate and community clients in major asset acquisition and divestment projects. Andrew is committed to working closely with private clients who require assistance in a wide variety of legal matters and circumstances.

Andrew demonstrates that professionalism and competency is not compromised by being a lawyer with heart… and a lawyer with a sense of humour.

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Nils Versemann

It is quite reasonable for any client seeking protection for its intellectual property to expect that the lawyer will be attentive to detail. As a registered trademark attorney as well as an experienced commercial lawyer, Nils is tailor made for clients in business who present with these types of challenges and opportunities.

Nils likes to play classical music in the office and every November for the last five years, he has cultivated a growth on his upper lip, ostensibly as a fundraising measure. Sometimes that growth has extended beyond the upper lip to challenge the legal definition of “moustache”.

In the law generally but especially with protection of intellectual property, it is sometimes the unexpected arguments that carry the day. This is one reason why investing in Nils is a good proposition. He gets all the possible arguments onto the table for consideration.

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Hugh Watson

Hugh has significant experience in construction and development projects throughout Australia and across multiple industries, including the commercial, not-for-profit, government and agricultural sectors. Hugh helps clients with all manner of construction, supply and maintenance agreements, but he takes particular pride in assisting clients strategically structure and procure their projects to get greater value and efficiencies. Hugh also advises clients on project and claims management during the project delivery phase.

From his formative years at Corrs Chambers Westgarth, Hugh now leads the Moores Construction team.

Many say Hugh is a tour de force when it comes to helping clients, but thankfully he reserves the lycra for weekend rides. What cannot be doubted is that Hugh, with his drive for excellence, always aims for a personal best in achieving pragmatic and successful outcomes for his clients.

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David Wells

After 25 years assisting clients resolve disputes, David had an opportunity to reinvent himself as leader of the team at Moores. In his early days as Managing Principal, some mistook his passion for competence, an illusion he was content not to disturb.

Time and experience are usually good teachers. These days, David is not so inclined to sweat the small stuff. As well as helping others to reach their potential, he remains keen on workplace innovation and improving the business model. The world is changing around us and we too need to change if we are to remain relevant. At least that is what he keeps telling us.

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Stephen Winspear

Stephen is a Practice Leader and has been a specialist Family Lawyer at Moores since 1986 and now, not surprisingly, knows quite a lot about everything to do with Family Law.

But he wants to be human first, and a lawyer second, and he really wants to be known for helping separating people move on in life, regain their optimism for their future and hopefully in most cases retain at least a passable relationship with their ex, especially for the sake of any children.

He enjoys Collaborative Family Law Practice and mentoring young lawyers and he was also a past chair of the Family Law and Collaborative Practice Sections of the Law Institute of Victoria.

With other Family Law professionals he wants to help to make the world a better place.