Dhanu Eliezer, a lawyer at the innovative law firm, LegalVision has won the coveted NSW Golden Gavel Competition this morning with her stand-up on “The person really in charge isn’t the Managing Partner, it’s ….”.
Ten talented (and possibly sleep-deprived) young lawyers took to the stage at the Golden Gavel Young Lawyers Breakfast at the Westin, Sydney, to offer up their comedic insights on some of the current legal topics dominating the headlines.
Event MC, Julian Morrow kept, the laughs rolling between competitors before giving up the stage to Ms Jane Needham SC and fellow judge, Mark Doepel (Partner, Sparke Helmore) to announce the winners.
As a judge of the event and 2019 Patron of NSW Young Lawyers, Jane Needham SC praised all the brave competitors for an a hilarious, albeit early start to the day.
Before announcing Dhanu Eliezer the 2019 winner, Ms Needham provided the audience with an entertaining insight into her methodology for the judging process which included giving pretend bonus points to competitors for providing her with some new phrases she can add to her courtroom repertoire!
Dhanu Eliezer will now go on to fly the flag for the NSW legal community at the National Golden Gavel.
The People’s Choice winner was Joseph Bates, from Baker Mackenzie, for his ‘advice’ to young lawyers on “Dropping your briefs: The rules of dating another lawyer.”
President of NSW Young Lawyers, Jennifer Windsor, said the Golden Gavel was one of NSW Young Lawyers’ oldest and most well-known events.
“While the public has a long tradition of making jokes about lawyers, the Golden Gavel competition shows that we are not afraid to turn the spotlight on the legal profession and use ourselves as fodder for our own entertainment,” Ms Windsor said.
Ms Windsor said the Golden Gavel judging criteria is quite tough with participants assessed on humour, cleverness, originality and performance.
“If entertaining a room full of 800 lawyers before they are fully caffeinated isn’t quite daunting enough, our competitors only receive their topic the day prior to the competition, giving them less than 24 hours to prepare.
“Seeing what our 10 competitors manage to come up with each year is always completely unexpected, creative, absolutely hilarious and sometimes irreverent.
“Today was no exception.”
The Golden Gavel is one of many events taking place across NSW and Australia during Law Week 2019 from 13-19 May.
This year’s Golden Gavel was sponsored by Sparke Helmore Lawyers.
The other Golden Gavel competitors were:
• Benjamin Keyworth, Federal Circuit Court
• Daniel Taha, King & Wood Mallesons
• Hudson Digby, Thomson Geer
• Lane Pitcher, University of Technology Sydney
• Marcelle Chester Harding, Mills Oakley
• Sarah Hort, Ashurst
• Thomas Johnston, Dentons
• Thomas Spohr, Legal Aid
All of the videos are available on the Golden Gavel Facebook page.