I am pleased to announce that the Governor-General, His Excellency the Hon David Hurley AC DSC (Retd), has accepted the advice of the Government and appointed Ms Amanda Humphreys, Ms Constantina Lioumis, Ms Janine Young, Ms Jennifer McArdle, Mr Mark Champion and Ms Louise Goodchild as judges of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (FCFCOA) (Division 2). They will commence on 6 February 2023.
The Government is committed to greater transparency in the judicial appointments process. In the lead up to this decision I consulted extensively with key members of the legal community seeking nominations of suitable, qualified people.
I established an advisory panel comprising the Hon William Alstergren AO, Chief Justice of the FCFCOA, the Hon Diana Bryant AO KC, former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia, and a senior officer of the Attorney-General’s Department. The advisory panel assessed the nominations to the FCFCOA and provided me with recommendations on suitable candidates. The six people whose judicial appointments I am announcing today were all recommended to me by the panel.
On behalf of the Australian Government, I congratulate Ms Humphreys, Ms Lioumis, Ms Young, Ms McArdle, Mr Champion and Ms Goodchild on their appointments, and thank them for their willingness to serve the people of Australia as judges of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (Division 2).
Ms Amanda Humphreys
Ms Amanda Humphreys has been appointed to the Melbourne Registry. Ms Humphreys was admitted as a solicitor in the Supreme Court of Victoria in 2001.
Ms Humphreys graduated from Monash University with a Bachelor of Arts in 1997 and with a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) in 1999. In 2011, she was accredited by the Law Institute of Victoria as a family law specialist.
Ms Humphreys commenced her career as a lawyer at Galbally & O’Bryan. From 2004 to 2015 Ms Humphreys was an associate and then senior associate at Kennedy Partners. From 2015 to 2019 she was a senior associate and then special counsel at MST Lawyers. Most recently Ms Humphreys was special counsel at Taussig Cherrie Fildes, a leading Australian family law firm.
Ms Constantina Lioumis
Ms Constantina Lioumis has been appointed to the Sydney Registry. Ms Lioumis was admitted as a solicitor in the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 1990. She was called to the Bar in 2018.
Ms Lioumis graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws in 1989 from Macquarie University. She later attained a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice from the College of Law in 1990.
In 1990 Ms Lioumis commenced her career as a solicitor with Trevor Nyman & Co. From 1992, she worked in the Department of Community Services as a solicitor. In 1995 she joined Nikola Velcic and Associates as a solicitor and later became an associate. From 1997 Ms Lioumis worked with Legal Aid NSW for 19 years as a solicitor, and then solicitor in charge, regional program co-ordinator and advocate. Ms Lioumis has also worked as an academic with the University of Technology Sydney from 2014 to 2020 and in 2017 was a Registrar at the Parramatta Registry of the then Family Court of Australia. Since being called to the Bar Ms Lioumis has worked as a barrister at Waratah Chambers where she specialised in family law, child protection and care matters, and adoptions. Since 2020 Ms Lioumis has been recognised by the Doyle’s Guide and in 2023 was recognised as a leading Family Law Barrister and a pre-eminent Parenting and Children’s barrister.
Ms Janine Young
Ms Janine Young has been appointed to the Melbourne Registry. Ms Young was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in the Supreme Court of Victoria in 1997. She was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in the High Court of Australia the same year.
Ms Young graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (Hons I) in 1996 from Deakin University.
Ms Young commenced her legal career in 1996 as an articled clerk in Mallesons Stephen Jacques, as it then was. From 2007, she worked at Corrs Chambers Westgarth as a senior associate and special counsel, becoming a partner in 2011. In 2019, Ms Young was appointed as a Deputy President of the Fair Work Commission.
Ms Jennifer McArdle
Ms Jennifer McArdle has been appointed to the Brisbane Registry. Ms McArdle was admitted as a solicitor in the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1989 and was admitted as a solicitor in the High Court of Australia in 1990. She was called to the Bar in 2010.
Ms McArdle graduated with a Bachelor of Laws in 1987 from the Queensland Institute of Technology.
In 1987, she commenced her career with Hemming and Hart as an articled clerk and then solicitor until 1995 when she joined Legal Aid Queensland as a solicitor, later becoming Executive Legal Officer in 1998. Ms McArdle was a solicitor with Peter J Sheehy in 1999 then returned to Legal Aid Queensland in 2000 as a solicitor, later as a barrister in 2010. Ms McArdle has specialised in all aspects of family law and child protection matters. Ms McArdle has been an accredited Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner since 2009, and is also an accredited arbitrator through the Australian Institute of Family Law Arbitrators and Mediators.
Mr Mark Champion
Mr Mark Champion has been appointed to the Melbourne Registry. Mr Champion was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in the Supreme Court of Victoria in 1994 and was called to the Bar in 2000.
Mr Champion graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Law (Hons) from the University of Melbourne in 1993.
Mr Champion began his legal career in 1994 as a solicitor with Holding Redlich. Since joining the Bar, Mr Champion has specialised in employment law, representing employees and employers across jurisdictions, and has been recognised by Doyle’s Guide as a Leading Employment Law Counsel on numerous occasions. In addition to his expertise as an employment law barrister, Mr Champion is experienced in administrative law, commercial law, and professional disciplinary matters. Mr Champion has also acted as a mediator, and in 2019 completed the Victorian Bar mediators course.
Ms Louise Goodchild
Ms Louise Goodchild has been appointed to the Sydney Registry. Ms Goodchild was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1992. She was called to the Bar in 2005.
Ms Goodchild graduated from the University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Arts in 1987, a Master of Arts in 1988 and a Bachelor of Laws in 1992.
Ms Goodchild commenced her legal career in 1992 at the Townsville and District Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service and later worked at the Cape York Land Council as principal legal officer until 2001. Following this Ms Goodchild worked as a principal solicitor at the National Children’s and Youth Law Centre. In addition to her practice at the Bar Ms Goodchild has lectured in law part-time at the University of Western Sydney and University of Technology, Sydney. She has also served as a part-time Judicial Member of the Administrative Decisions Tribunal NSW and NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.