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Advocates of Inspiration: 20 Australian Lawyers Turned Inspirational Speakers



Embark on a journey through the diverse and captivating world of inspiration with our series spotlighting 20 Australian inspirational speakers from various walks of life. From the thrill-seekers and adventurers who have conquered the world's most challenging terrains to the astute politicians shaping the nation's destiny, and the creative minds who weave stories and melodies, this series showcases the voices that have the power to motivate, uplift, and ignite change. Whether they've soared to great heights, dived into the depths, or navigated the complexities of their fields, these speakers bring a wealth of experiences that transcend their individual realms. Join us as we delve into the stories of 20 remarkable individuals in each category, discovering the wisdom they share and the impact they've made on the world around them.


This is part 13 of a 20-part series

  1. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were adventurers.
  2. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were politicians.
  3. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were writers.
  4. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were TV presenters.
  5. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were movie stars.
  6. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were swimmers.
  7. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were scientists.
  8. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were teachers.
  9. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were surfers.
  10. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were doctors.
  11. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were Olympians.
  12. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were musicians.
  13. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were lawyers.
  14. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were pilots.
  15. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were footballers
  16. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were cricketers.
  17. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were military.
  18. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were farmers.
  19. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were sailors.
  20. 20 Australian inspirational speakers who were CEOs.



As we conclude this series, we've had the privilege of exploring the narratives of 20 outstanding Australian inspirational speakers in each category, each a testament to the vast reservoir of talent, resilience, and wisdom within the nation. From the daring adventurers who embraced the unknown to the influential politicians shaping policies and perspectives, the imaginative writers and storytellers who crafted worlds with their words, to the charismatic TV presenters and movie stars who graced our screens, these individuals have left an indelible mark on their respective fields.

We've dived into the world of swimmers who conquered waves, scientists who unraveled mysteries, teachers who shaped minds, surfers who rode the tides, and doctors who mended bodies. We've celebrated the Olympians who exemplified excellence, musicians who struck chords with our souls, lawyers who championed justice, and pilots who soared through the skies. The footballers and cricketers who scored victories on the field, the military figures and farmers who served and cultivated, and the sailors who navigated uncharted waters—all have shared their stories, their triumphs, and the lessons learned along the way.

And finally, we've heard from the CEOs who led with vision, turning companies into success stories. As we conclude, let these stories resonate, serving as beacons of inspiration, reminding us of the power within each individual to create change, overcome challenges, and inspire others to reach new heights. The journey doesn't end here; rather, it continues with the echoes of these speakers' voices, guiding us toward a future full of possibility and promise.



The legal profession is often associated with the pursuit of justice, and Australia has been home to a distinguished group of lawyers who have not only excelled in the courtroom but have also transitioned into the realm of inspirational speaking. These legal minds bring a unique perspective to the stage, sharing stories of resilience, advocacy, and the power of using the law as a tool for positive change. In this article, we celebrate 20 Australian lawyers turned inspirational speakers who continue to make a profound impact beyond the courtroom.

  1. Julian Burnside:

    • Legal Legacy: Barrister and human rights advocate.
    • Inspirational Focus: Human rights, refugee advocacy, and the importance of compassion in the legal system.
  2. Gillian Triggs:

    • Legal Legacy: Former president of the Australian Human Rights Commission.
    • Inspirational Focus: Human rights, equality, and the role of institutions in promoting justice.
  3. George Brandis:

    • Legal Legacy: Former Attorney-General and High Commissioner to the United Kingdom.
    • Inspirational Focus: Legal reform, public service, and the intersection of law and politics.
  4. Bret Walker:

    • Legal Legacy: Prominent barrister and constitutional law expert.
    • Inspirational Focus: Constitutional law, legal advocacy, and the role of the judiciary in upholding democracy.
  5. Anne Aly:

    • Legal Legacy: Counter-terrorism expert and Member of Parliament.
    • Inspirational Focus: Social justice, diversity, and the importance of women in leadership roles.
  6. Robert Richter:

    • Legal Legacy: Renowned criminal defense barrister.
    • Inspirational Focus: Criminal justice, the presumption of innocence, and the art of effective legal advocacy.
  7. Marie Bashir:

    • Legal Legacy: Former Governor of New South Wales and psychiatrist.
    • Inspirational Focus: Mental health, public service, and the connection between law and mental well-being.
  8. David Marr:

    • Legal Legacy: Journalist, author, and lawyer.
    • Inspirational Focus: Investigative journalism, freedom of speech, and the role of media in shaping society.
  9. Geoffrey Robertson:

    • Legal Legacy: Human rights barrister and author.
    • Inspirational Focus: International law, human rights advocacy, and the pursuit of global justice.
  10. Larissa Behrendt:

    • Legal Legacy: Indigenous rights advocate and academic.
    • Inspirational Focus: Indigenous justice, cultural diversity, and the importance of education in achieving equality.
  11. Tony Fitzgerald:

    • Legal Legacy: Former Judge and corruption investigator.
    • Inspirational Focus: Anti-corruption efforts, judicial independence, and the importance of ethical leadership.
  12. Kate Jenkins:

    • Legal Legacy: Sex Discrimination Commissioner.
    • Inspirational Focus: Gender equality, workplace diversity, and addressing discrimination in society.
  13. Deng Adut:

    • Legal Legacy: Criminal defense lawyer and former child soldier.
    • Inspirational Focus: Overcoming adversity, refugee advocacy, and the impact of education on personal transformation.
  14. Tim Wilson:

    • Legal Legacy: Human rights advocate and former Human Rights Commissioner.
    • Inspirational Focus: Freedom of speech, individual liberties, and the balance between personal freedoms and societal well-being.
  15. Jennifer Robinson:

    • Legal Legacy: Human rights lawyer and barrister.
    • Inspirational Focus: Media freedom, international law, and representing high-profile clients in the pursuit of justice.
  16. James Paterson:

    • Legal Legacy: Liberal Senator and constitutional law enthusiast.
    • Inspirational Focus: Political engagement, constitutional principles, and the role of young leaders in shaping the future.
  17. Nicole Lee:

    • Legal Legacy: Lawyer and academic specializing in domestic violence.
    • Inspirational Focus: Ending domestic violence, empowering survivors, and legal reform in the context of family violence.
  18. Katherine Teh:

    • Legal Legacy: Human rights lawyer and founder of the International Social Service Australia.
    • Inspirational Focus: Cross-border legal issues, international child protection, and the impact of legal advocacy on vulnerable populations.
  19. Jane Needham:

    • Legal Legacy: Former President of the New South Wales Bar Association.
    • Inspirational Focus: Gender equity in the legal profession, leadership, and the evolving role of women in law.
  20. Brenda Hale:

    • Legal Legacy: Former Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia.
    • Inspirational Focus: Judicial leadership, legal education, and the legacy of a distinguished legal career.


These 20 Australian lawyers turned inspirational speakers have not only made significant contributions to the legal landscape but have also leveraged their expertise to inspire positive change in society. From human rights advocacy to constitutional law, their stories and insights resonate with audiences eager to understand the intersection of law, justice, and social progress. As they continue to share their experiences, these speakers embody the transformative power of legal advocacy and its potential to shape a more just and equitable world.




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 Through a telescopic sight as an army sniper. Through the TV lens as a globe-trotting cameraman for ABCTV, National Geographic and BBC. Through smoke and mirrors as a professional magician. He has learned from Sir Edmund Hillary, Elon Musk, death row inmates and space shuttle pilots. He's traveled far but his longest journeys have been from behind the camera to in front of it. From stutterer to professional speaker. From shy to shine.