On 27 February 2019 I attended the Banco Court, Supreme Court of New South Wales for the swearing out ceremony of Justice Margaret Beazley. As would be known Justice Beazley has retired as the President of the Court of Appeal to take up the role of Governor of New South Wales.
On the day we heard from the Chief Justice of New South Wales, The Honourable Thomas Frederick Bathurst, AC on behalf of the judiciary. We heard from the Attorney General of New South Wales, Mark Speakman, SC MP on behalf of the Government and NSW Bar Association and we also heard from Ms Elizabeth Espinosa on behalf of the Law Society of New South Wales.
What we heard is the story of a remarkable woman. Justice Beazley graduated with Honours from Sydney University Law School in 1973. She was a solicitor for the entire period of one month before being called to the Bar. She was appointed a Queen’s Council in 1989. From 1984 to 1988 Justice Beazley was a member of the NSW Equal Opportunity Tribunal. She also served as an Acting Judge of the District Court as well as a time on the NSW Independent Commission against Corruption.
In January 1993 Justice Beazley was appointed a Judge of the Federal Court of Australia. In 1996 Justice Beazley was appointed a Judge on the New South Wales Court of Appeal, the first woman to hold such a position. In March 2013 Justice Beazley was appointed the President of the Court of Appeal, again the first woman to hold such a position.
Justice Beazley’s contribution to the judicial system and the law in New South Wales, in particular, cannot be overstated. All who know her speak highly of her intellect, wit and wisdom. She will be sorely missed on the bench but we will welcome her as our next Governor.
We also take particular pride in the fact that Justice Beazley was educated for the final years of her secondary education at Mount St Josephs Milperra, and we will therefore claim her as a representative of South-Western Sydney.
On behalf of Brydens Lawyers, we wish Justice Beazley all the very best in her new role.