Please find below the current speakers for the conference. Additional speaker information will be added in the lead up to the event.
Kym Cavanagh - Hede Bryne & Hall
Kym is a Director of Hede Byrne & Hall Lawyers, a regional law firm with offices in Warwick, Roma and Toowoomba. Kym has been involved in the legal industry for over 24 years. With experience in litigation, personal injury, land compensation claims, contract and property law, Kym has represented large insurers, employers and individuals. Presently Kym works predominantly in workers compensation law managing a team of experienced lawyers and paralegals operating in-house and remotely across Queensland. Over the past 10 years Hede Byrne & Hall Lawyers have continued to look for technological improvements while expanding into the regions and venturing into flexible working from home arrangements. Outside of law Kym enjoys coaching and playing netball.
Sheetal Deo - Shakti Legal Solutions
Sheetal Deo (she/her) is passionate about leveraging platforms and privilege to connect ideas, people and opportunities which amplify and empower underrepresented experiences. Sheetal has a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and political science from the University of the Fraser Valley (Canada), and a Juris Doctor, Master of Laws and Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice from Bond University (Australia). Sheetal incorporates her political and social science training in her advocacy for equity & accessibility within the legal profession and the community it serves. Sheetal is the Principal and Founder of Shakti Legal Solutions; an innovative low-bono law firm designed specifically to improve access to legal assistance for everyday people through a unique, ‘pay what you can’ model.
Outside of her practice, Sheetal works with the College of Law as an adjunct lecturer, runs a diversity and inclusion consultancy (The Diversity Collective) and volunteers her time on various not-for-profit organisations and boards to connect ideas, people and opportunities which amplify and empower underrepresented experiences
Adair Donaldson - Donaldson Law
Adair Donaldson LL.M. LL.B. BBus founded Donaldson Law in 2016. He has been a lawyer for in excess of 25 years. Over this time, he has built a large regional practice and worked as a partner in a national legal firm.
Adair developed Donaldson Law with a primary focus on a non-adversarial approach to achieving holistic legal solutions for clients. His work focuses on helping those who have suffered abuse within institutions such as the Australian Defence Force, religious organisations, educational departments and sporting institutions.
Since 2007 Adair has worked to develop educational programs and consulted on legal issues affecting youth. The development of acclaimed preventative law resources that address the legal consequences of alcohol abuse, sexual assaults, discrimination, illicit drugs, violence, social media, and the illegal use of technology has been a long held passion for him.
Adair works closely with the National Rugby League (NRL) to develop and implement educational resources for their players and clubs. He has been appointed to the Australian Rugby League Commission's Respectful Relationships Committee, which focuses on ensuring respect for women throughout the code. He is also an ambassador for the Full Stop Australia which is the peak rape and domestic violence service in Australia.
In 2002 he was nominated by his peers for the Australian Plaintiff Lawyers Association Civil Justice Award in Queensland, and in 2005 he, along with his business partner won this same award.
Adair has appeared before Federal and State Parliamentary Committees to provide evidence in addressing youth violence, alcohol related issues, and abuse within the Australian Defence Force.
Andrew Doyle - Doyle Wilson Solicitors
Andrew Doyle founded Doyle Wilson in 1984 in Goondiwindi, the centre of the fertile McIntyre river valley on the border of Queensland and New South Wales.
He developed a successful legal practice based on agribusiness and all areas of law which were required by people and businesses in that regional setting. Andrew has a rural background and grew up on commercial farming and grazing property in the Upper Hunter, and before studying law, worked in rural and fishing industries.
Helen Driscoll - Rose Litigation Lawyers
Helen Driscoll is the President of Queensland Young Lawyers. She is a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland and admitted to the High Court of Australia. Helen is passionate about all things law and people, and firmly believes that law is a helping profession.
Helen is a commercial litigation solicitor at Rose Litigation Lawyers. Her day-to-day involves various litigation including construction disputes, insolvency, defamation and business disputes. Helen was a Finalist in the 2022 Lawyers Weekly 30 under 30 Awards in the Litigation and Dispute Resolution category.
She graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and Journalism, and completed her Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice with College of Law. During her studies Helen notably worked in-house at Mitsui & Co (Tokyo) in Japan as a New Colombo Plan Scholar, and held numerous positions in various university associations. Helen competed nationally and internationally in mooting competitions in contract law, commercial arbitration, corporate and international public. She holds several mooting championships and best speaker awards. Helen was awarded the Tom Cain Trophy for Outstanding Academic and Extra-Curricular Achievement in 2019, awarded to one QUT Law alumni annually.
Helen was a candidate in the Queensland Law Society, Future Leaders Election in 2020. She was also a volunteer with the Australian Red Cross, as an International Humanitarian Law Speaker up until the end of 2021. Helen was once a speech and drama teacher, with various voice, communication and drama certifications, and would happily return to the stage if law doesn’t work out!
Outside of work, Helen is an avid fitness fanatic, long walks along the beach with her tiny four-legged partner in crime, Beau.
Bronwyn Eynon-Lewis - Lacuna Professional Solutions
Bronwyn is an ICF accredited executive coach and non-practising lawyer admitted in Queensland and New York. In 2005, while expecting her first child, Bronwyn transitioned to a business development and marketing role. Two more children followed and throughout that time she also held management roles in large international and national law firms both in Asia and Australia.
Returning with her family to Australia in 2012, Bronwyn met Allison while working in a national business development role at MinterEllison before leaving her corporate role in 2017 to work as an executive coach.
Tired of seeing great lawyers leaving the law to meet other responsibilities during the different seasons of life, Bronwyn and Allison launched Lacuna (then Lacuna Legal Providers) in 2019 to provide lawyers with specialist business development, marketing, administration, management and coaching support. Her vision is to provide lawyers with services to help them retain and build their expertise, client relationships, confidence and currency through all circumstances.
In 2020, Bronwyn was recognised as a finalist for Legal Support Professional of the Year at the Australian Law Awards. Lacuna was awarded the Innovator of the Year (Company) Award at the Australian Law Awards in December 2021 and was a finalist at the 2022 Australian Law Awards.
Jessica Goldie - Queen’s Arms Chambers
Ms Goldie was first called to the Bar in February 2012. She practises predominantly in criminal law, having appeared in over a hundred criminal jury trials throughout regional Queensland. Between 2009 to 2018, Ms Goldie was employed with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and was head of the Toowoomba Chambers from 2016 to 2018. Since going to the private bar in 2018, Ms Goldie is regularly briefed to represent clients all over Queensland, particularly in remote and regional areas. Ms Goldie has a keen interest in ensuring access to justice for those living in regional Queensland and serves on the Queensland Bar Association’s Regional Issues Committee. Ms Goldie is actively involved in the Toowoomba and legal communities. Ms Goldie previously served on the Board of the Queensland Rural, Regional and Remote Women’s Network and on the committee for the Women Lawyers Association of Queensland as Southern Regional Representative.
Peta Gray - Enterprise Legal
Peta is Managing Director and Owner of Enterprise Legal - winner of the LawyersWeekly Excellence Award in 2021 and Toowoomba’s most innovative law firm. Enterprise Legal was the first law firm in the Darling Downs region to offer absolutely all of its services on a value-basis, providing an unprecedented level of transparency for clients, which is a crucial factor in creating accessibility to legal services, as well as a positive client experience.
Peta has practiced exclusively in business and commercial property law for the duration of her career and as such, she has worked on thousands of business and property transactions. Peta has extensive experience advising a range of business clients, from ASX-listed corporates to ‘mum and dad’ business owners.
Peta’s particular passion lies in supporting and enhancing local businesses and the people behind them and it was this passion which was one of the main driving factors behind Peta and her business partner starting Enterprise Legal in September 2017.
Ben Gouldson - Clifford Gouldson Lawyers
Ben Gouldson is Managing Director of Clifford Gouldson Lawyers, a well-known and trusted advisor to many Toowoomba, Queensland and national businesses over his more than two decades in the legal industry. With a breadth of experience across multiple practice areas, Ben’s expertise is unrivalled. Whether in workplace law, corporate advisory, export advisory, intellectual property, litigation and dispute resolution, construction law or tax, structures and estate planning, Ben’s capacity to see the big picture and guide clients to simple solutions for complex legal problems makes him a highly sought after legal practitioner. Ben is at the forefront in developing new solutions for the delivery of legal services and has been instrumental in driving the development of new, client focussed, practice areas within our firm and within the Toowoomba and Downs business community.
Jemima Harris - Invia Legal Operations
Jemima Harris is a senior lawyer and consultant, and an expert in legal operations, strategy, transformation and continuous improvement. She is recognised for her pragmatic approach, commercial acumen, innovative thinking and enthusiasm for helping others.
Jemima’s legal career started at a firm in country NSW over 20 years ago, and she has since worked in and with legal teams globally. She thrives on helping clients become more effective, efficient and happier lawyers. She has delivered projects across process improvement, operating model review and transformation, developing legal team strategies and legal ops roadmaps as well as legal tech selection & implementation. Jemima has a proven track record of successful delivery of complex transformation projects and strongly believes in the role of empathy in effective change management.
Professor Caroline Hart - UniSQ Professor (Law)
Professor Caroline Hart has been researching into the regional/rural Queensland legal profession for more than a decade. She has published widely on the profession, including ‘The Seven Elements of Successful Country Law Firms’ (published by The Federation Press, 2018). Caroline is currently leading a number of funded research projects into the Queensland legal profession, including, ‘Law Firm Capability to Meet Impact from Covid, Technology and Intergenerational Change’. She is the Associate Head of the School of Law and Justice and a member of the QLS Practice Management Course Committee. She is also a member of the Ipswich District Law Association, Downs and Southwestern Queensland Law Association and Law Council of Australia. Caroline has strong connections to the regions, especially after having raised her family in Toowoomba.
Matthew Hollings - Sky Discovery
Matthew has been a part of the legal industry for over 10 years. First, as a practising solicitor working in litigation for a large national firm. Followed by a stint in-house working for a large financial institution’s disputes team before moving into the world of legal technology. Matthew has spent the last 8 years using his practical experience as a litigator to support lawyers across private practice, in-house and government with a wide array of eDiscovery solutions that help them to effectively and efficiently collect, analyse, manage and review the increasing volumes and types of data related to their disputes, regulatory responses and investigations. Working in close partnership with their clients throughout the entire matter lifecycle, Matthew and his colleagues use their legal and technological experience to develop practical solutions to the increasing challenges posed by data, so that the legal team can focus on the law.
Matthew is also President of the QLS Future Leaders Committee
Sacha Kirk - Lawcadia
Sacha is the Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Lawcadia, a two-sided cloud-based platform that in-house legal teams and their law firms use for client collaboration, matter management, legal intake & triage and legal spend management. Sacha is passionate about transformation in the legal industry and applies creative thinking processes, strategy, and design thinking to identifying pain points and developing innovative solutions. Winner of the Australian Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2019 for legal and awarded Women in Law Marketing Communications Professional of the Year 2020. Sacha is an advocate for technology innovation and women in leadership.
Leanne Matthewson - Murdoch Lawyers
Director – Future Planning. Growing up in rural Queensland instilled in Leanne a strong work ethic and value of planning for the future. After gaining her Admission and returning to the Toowoomba region, Leanne quickly realised that Murdoch Lawyers was the place for her. Passionate about contributing to the future of the Darling Downs, Leanne is a champion for this region being recognised as a hub for legal services innovation.
Leanne is passionate about giving clients the right information so that they are empowered to make informed decisions about their present and future. A growing part of Leanne’s work involves supporting other lawyers across regional Queensland with complex estate and succession planning, as well as assisting them with unusual situations involving trusts and self-managed superannuation funds. Leanne also actively supports women in the profession with their personal growth/development.
Leanne’s areas of expertise include: Estate Planning, Succession Planning, Structuring, Trusts, Self-Managed Superannuation Funds, and Agribusiness and Property.
Leanne continues to be recognised by Doyle’s Guide as a Recommended Queensland Wills, Estates and Succession Planning Lawyer (2018-2021).
Rizwana McDonald - Foundd Legal
I’m a lawyer with over 20 years of experience, I’m an entrepreneur and I am passionate about all things creative! That’s part of what led me to start Foundd… Over the years working as both a lawyer and as the founder of an ecommerce business of my own, I discovered that there were a huge number of amazing designers, creatives and fellow entrepreneurs out there who had fantastic ideas and business models, but had no access to the legal ins and outs that are imperative to running a fully legitimate, successful and protected company.
Alex Rosenrauch- PwC
Alex Rosenrauch is a Senior Manager in Australia’s PwC NewLaw team that provides strategic advisory services for the transformation of global corporate legal departments and law firms. Previously a lawyer, Alex’s focus and passion is with Legal Technology where he has 5+ years experience in building, implementing and procuring different Legal Technology solutions both within the APAC region where he currently resides and in the US where he previously worked and lived. Alex also has a passion for data and is focused on strengthening and transforming how a legal function works by delivering a new agile construct that is data driven and enabled by technology that empowers the team to operate efficiently, effectively and collaboratively. Alex is also the co-host of an internationally streamed podcast called ‘The Legal Ops Podcast’ that is about all things legal operations, legal business and legal technology and is an active thought-leader speaking regularly at industry events and conferences.
Chelsea Saldumbide - McConnell & Saldumbide Criminal Lawyers
Chelsea Saldumbide has been working in criminal law for over 9 years. She has had broad and extensive experience in this field, having worked for both the Cth DPP & State DPP, as well as at LAQ and, in private practice. In June 2021, Ms Saldumbide established her own firm, McConnell & Saldumbide Criminal Lawyers, where she currently specialises in criminal and traffic defence.
Ms Saldumbide regularly appears in the Toowoomba Magistrates, District and Supreme Courts, advocating on behalf of her clients. She also appears with, and instructs senior counsel in many complex, District and Supreme Court applications, sentences and trials. More recently, Ms Saldumbide has broadened her interests and practice to appearances before the Queensland Court of Appeal.
Ms Saldumbide is a passionate advocate, who is dedicated to achieving superior results for her clients through both her knowledge of the law and expertise in advocacy, whilst ensuring procedural fairness and access to justice for all of her clients.
Adjunct Professor Stafford Shepherd
Stafford was admitted as a solicitor in 1987. After admission he practised for a number of years in partnership and subsequently as a sole practitioner. Stafford sold his practice in 2004. Between 2004 and 2008 he worked as a consultant to a number of law practices. In 2008 he joined the Queensland Law Society as an Ethics Guidance Officer. In 2015 Stafford was appointed as Director, QLS Ethics and Practice Centre (‘the Centre’), and now holds the title, Principal Ethics and Practice Counsel. He is the Society’s representative on the Professional Ethics Committee of the Law Council of Australia.
Stafford was appointed as Legal Practitioner Director of QLS Solicitor Support Pty Ltd (‘QLS Solicitor Support’) from 1 October 2019. QLS Solicitor Support is a wholly owned incorporated legal practice of the Queensland Law Society. The services provided by QLS Solicitor Support include ethics and practice support guidance to the Society’s membership.
The Centre provides ethical guidance and practice support services. In addition, the Centre delivers practical legal ethics and practice support sessions to members, the profession and students (whether at university or practical legal training).
Stafford is the executive editor of the Australian Solicitors Conduct Rules 2012 in Practice: A Commentary for Australian Legal Practitioners. He has written extensively on legal ethics.
Stafford is a sessional member at the Queensland University of Technology. On 15 November 2021 he was appointed as an Adjunct Professor with the School of Law and Justice, University of Southern Queensland. He holds a Bachelor of Laws and Master of Laws (Commercial and Corporate) from the University of Queensland, a postgraduate certificate in arbitration and mediation from the University of Adelaide. Stafford is also a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP). Stafford’s areas of interest are trust, succession law and the equitable doctrines underpinning legal ethics. Stafford was recently appointed as an Adjunct Profession at the University of Southern Queensland.
Andrew Shute - Carter Newell
Andrew heads Carter Newell’s Litigation & Dispute Resolution team. He has over 25 years’ experience in commercial litigation and alternative dispute resolution, including 14 years in a top-tier National firm.
He assists a wide variety of public and private sector clients in the conduct and resolution of substantial and complex commercial disputes, and in dealing with challenging situations (including advising in relation to commencing and defending proceedings for injunctive relief; responding to subpoenas and similar processes, responding to critical incidents – including environmental incidents, workplace accidents, product recall, and data breaches; dealing with regulators; and providing urgent media advice).
Consistent with Carter Newell’s ‘One Team’ approach, Andrew works closely with the Commercial Property, Corporate, Energy & Resources, Planning & Environment, and Workplace Advisory teams and their clients.
He is actively involved in reforms and education relating to the practice of litigation, and has gained particular expertise in developing and utilising technology to deliver more efficient and cost effective outcomes for clients (in both dispute and corporate contexts). He is regularly asked to advise and present on matters involving the drafting and interpretation of contractual and statutory provisions, competition and consumer law, the protection of client legal privilege, confidentiality and privacy issues, data and information management strategies, and the electronic conduct of litigation.
Andrew is the current chair of the QLS Litigation Rules Committee, and a member of the QLS Innovation Committee. He has been recognised in the 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 editions of Best Lawyers in Australia as an Alternative Dispute Resolution, Competition Law and Litigation Lawyer, and as a Leading Litigation & Dispute Resolution Lawyer in Doyle's Guide 2018.
Kara Thomson - 2022 Queensland Law Society President
Kara is an Accredited Specialist in Personal Injuries Law. Her work has taken her across all of Queensland, acting for regional and Brisbane based clients in both plaintiff and defendant insurance matters. In 2015 Kara was elected as a Queensland Law Society Councillor and has completed three terms, being appointed Vice President in 2020/2021. Kara is the 2022 Law Society President and is actively engaged with members of the Law Society and key stakeholders to ensure good law, good lawyers, public good. She is a leader in her field, receiving a Doyles Guide endorsement in 2020 and 2021 and was previously a finalist for the 2019 Women in Law Mentor of the Year award.
Allison Warburton - Lacuna Professional Solutions
Allison is a senior legal practitioner, experienced company director and leading expert in energy policy.
Allison has forged a rich and varied career in the law, spending 18 years as a partner with Minter Ellison, a big 6 Australian law firm, before moving into the public policy arena and co-founding a start-up business in the legal support services sector.
As a senior partner in a large law firm, Allison saw first-hand how challenging it had become for lawyers to successfully manage their legal careers. The commitments in their working lives made it very difficult for lawyers to be involved with their families and to participate in their broader communities.
Allison established Lacuna (then Lacuna Legal Providers) with Bronwyn Eynon-Lewis in 2019 to provide lawyers with another option - a way for lawyers to continue a rewarding and satisfying legal career as well as enjoying their lives outside of the law.
In addition to co-founding Lacuna, Allison is on the Council of Kings College, University of Queensland. She was a Commissioner at the Australian Energy Market Commission, the rulemaking and advisory body for the Australian national energy markets, from 2018 to 2022. In 2016, she was one of five independent expert panel members appointed by the Queensland Government to conduct an inquiry to guide the development of a renewable energy strategy for Queensland. She also served as a non-executive director for energy company Stanwell Corporation Limited, from 2016 to 2018.
In 2021, Allison was recognised as a finalist for Executive of the Year at the Women in Law Awards. Lacuna was awarded the Innovator of the Year (Company) Award at the Australian Law Awards in December 2021.
Hannah Wordsworth – M.A. Kent & Associates | Relate Mediation
Hannah is a UniSQ Alumni, solicitor at M.A. Kent & Associates, mediator at Relate Mediation and the WLAQ Social Secretary.
Hannah is passionate about being part of a supportive and collegiate profession. Hannah volunteers her time with WLAQ and is inspired about the impact that legal representation and advocacy can have for vulnerable people.
Before being admitted as a solicitor, Hannah spent over a decade working with children and families in tertiary child protection. Her time there delivered some insightful and unforgettable experiences. Hannah now uses the skills and knowledge she gained in her work as a Parent and Child (direct) Representative. As well as Child Protection, Hannah’s practice areas include Family, Crime and Domestic Violence.
Hannah is the founder and principal mediator at Relate Mediation. Relate is a private practice offering Mediation and Parenting Coordination Services. This type of work has been a natural professional progression, drawing together the skills from Hannah’s experience in law and behavioural science with her experience and capabilities from her time in Child Safety. People led mediation and parenting coordination services is a perfect fit for Hannah because she is strongly believes in the value of empowering people to make their own decisions.
Andrea Perry-Petersen - Consultant
Andrea holds a Bachelor of Arts and Laws (Honours) from TC Beirne School of Law and was admitted to practice in 1996, after which she practised in Queensland and the United Kingdom.
Her diverse industry experience comprises governance, commercial law, human rights and community law. She possesses a unique combination of skills in innovation and program design, research, education, communication & functional literacy, litigation, law reform and process improvement.
As a consultant, Andrea provides strategic and practical advice to legal technology companies and lawyers about digital innovation and legal design including software selection and how to develop human-centred digital services. She is currently collaborating with an expert lawyer on a first-of-its-kind digital legal product for Estates law.
Dr Jasmine Thomas - UniSQ Associate Director (Academic Integrity)
Jasmine is the Associate Director (Academic Integrity) within the Academic Transformation Portfolio at UniSQ. This position has been designed to ensure that academic integrity approaches across the University are consistently informed by strategy, pedagogy, and digital opportunity. Jasmine’s background is in law, having completed her PhD in legal ethics and philosophy. She has been a sessional lecturer for eight years in the areas of privacy law, technology law, cyber security and research methodologies.
Angus Murray - Irish Bentley Lawyers
Angus is a Partner and Trade Marks Attorney at Irish Bentley Lawyers. He holds a Master of Laws from Stockholm University and is an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of Southern Queensland. He is also a co-founder and director of the Legal Forecast, a member of the QLS Innovation Committee and the QLS Privacy, Data, Technology and Intellectual Property Law Committee and a Vice President of the Queensland Council for Civil Liberties.