Inductees 2012 - The Honourable Antoinette Kennedy AO

The Honourable Antoinette Kennedy AO

Antoinette Kennedy is one of the most outstanding women to have been a member of WA’s legal profession.

She was the first woman appointed as chief judge of the District Court in WA and one of only three women to have headed up a court in Australia.

Ms Kennedy stepped down from the bench in 2010 but has remained active in the community and last year was appointed an officer of the Order of Australia for services to the law and to the judiciary, to professional associations, as a mentor to women in the law and to the community. She is patron of the Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Centre, Association of Court Welfare Officers and Access Housing Australia, which is a non-government community housing organisation.

She has been outspoken on issues of social justice and has a keen interest in the provision of affordable housing.

Ms Kennedy served as a member of Murdoch University’s Senate for six years, was a founding member of the Women Lawyers of Western Australia and has been the body’s patron since 1999, was a member of the Chief Justice’s Gender Bias Taskforce and a mentor in the Law Society of WA’s mentoring program for young lawyers.

Raised in Joondanna, she was the only woman in her high school class to attend university and then became the only women in her law class at the University of WA to gain her articles of clerkship.

She has said that when she became a lawyer, there were only five other women practising in WA. She was appointed to the District Court in 1985 at the age of 40, becoming chief judge in 2004. During her career, she served on a wide variety of boards, including those of the University of Notre Dame Law School, St John of God Hospital and the Catholic Social Justice Commission and she was a member of the Ethics Committee of Graylands Hospital and the Centenary of Women’s Suffrage in WA Committee.

The West Australian

Article Index
Inductees 2012
Jahna Cedar
Linda Fistonich
Professor Colleen Hayward
Annette Howard
Freda Jacob
The Honourable Antoinette Kennedy AO
Kerry Newick
Dr Casta Tungaraza
Linda Wayman
Professor Samina Yasmeen
Roll of Honour - Susan Adelaide Casson
Roll of Honour - Dr Roberta Jull
Roll of Honour - Dame Annie Florence Gillies Cardell-Oliver
Roll of Honour - Florence Hummerston
Roll of Honour - Isabel Johnston
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