Board members - Victorian Legal Services Board + Commissioner

Board members

The Board comprises a Chairperson, three elected lawyer members and three lay members. The Chairperson and lay members of the Board are nominated by the Attorney-General and appointed by the Governor in Council. Lawyer members are elected by lawyers who are registered on the Board’s electoral roll. One is a barrister (advocate member) and two are solicitors (non-advocate members). The day-to-day activities of the Board are headed by the Chief Executive Officer.

Ms Fiona Bennett – Non-lawyer  member
Fiona is a non-executive director of Beach Energy Ltd and Hills Ltd. She is a Chartered Accountant with extensive experience in commercial and financial management, governance, risk management and auditing. Fiona has held senior executive positions at BHP Billiton Ltd and Coles Group Ltd, and has been Chief Financial Officer of several organisations in the health sector. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Institute of Management. Fiona was appointed to the Board in January 2008 and was appointed as Chairperson of the Board by the Attorney-General in January 2013.

Ms Carolyn Bond AO – Non-lawyer member

Carolyn is a consumer advocate who has worked on a range of consumer policy issues including credit regulation, debt collection and consumer dispute resolution. She has represented consumer interests on a number of bodies and is a former Co-CEO of the Consumer Action Law Centre; a specialist community legal centre which provides legal assistance to consumers and campaigns on consumer issues. Carolyn was a member of the Commonwealth Consumer Advisory Committee, the National Legal Assistance Body and the National Legal Profession Reform Consultative Group.

Ms Cate Dealehr – Solicitor (non-advocate) member
Cate is a lawyer with over 30 years experience. She started her career at the Victorian Government Solicitor’s office before becoming a legal advisor to the Victorian Chief Commissioner of Police. Cate is the principal of the Australian Legal Costing Group, which she established in 1990. Cate has been a long-term member of the Law Institute of Victoria’s costs policy committee and in 2010 become one of Victoria’s first LIV accredited specialists in costs law. Cate regularly tutors at Leo Cussen Centre for Law, conducting seminars since 1994. Beyond legal practice, Cate is a passionate advocate for women in business and politics. Her roles have included director of the International Women’s Federation of Commerce & Industry, and in 2007, founder of an annual scholarship for women leadership in politics. Cate is the recipient of the 2014 LIV Access to Justice/Pro Bono award.

Mr Peter Jopling AM QC – Barrister (advocate) member
Peter is a Queen’s Counsel specialising in commercial law and trade practices law. He was admitted to practice in 1978 and signed the Victorian roll in 1980. Peter served as an Associate to High Court Justices Sir Keith Aickin and Sir Ninian Stephen. He was appointed QC in 1996. Peter has held positions as director, member and chair for a range of organisations and committees. He is currently a Governor of the Florey Neurosciences Institutes, director of the Ian Potter Museum of Art, member of the Board of Examiners of the Supreme Court of Victoria, member of the Victorian College of the Arts Foundation, a member of the advisory board of the Centre for Ethical Leadership at the University of Melbourne, a director of the Menzies Foundation and a trustee of the McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery.

Ms Cate Wood – Non-lawyer member
Cate is an experienced Director who holds positions on numerous Boards, providing a depth of knowledge in governance, investment, strategic planning and diversity. A current director and Chair of the industry superannuation fund, CareSuper, Cate is a director on several other superannuation industry boards, and is also a director of the Mother’s Day Classic Foundation. She has previously held executive positions as CEO of AGEST Super and The Trade Union Training Authority. Cate holds a Bachelor of Arts (Social Sciences) and is a Graduate and Fellow of the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees. Cate was appointed to the Board by the Governor in Council in August 2016.

Mr Steven Stevens – Solicitor (non-advocate) member

Steven joined the Board in July 2013 as an elected legal practitioner representative. He is also a Member of the Legal Services Council established in 2014 under the Legal Profession Uniform Law. Steven is a former President of the LIV and Director of the Law Council of Australia. He has been the Chair of the Law Council’s Professional Ethics Committee since 2009 and is Co- Chair of the International Bar Association (IBA)’s Professional Ethics Committee. Steven is an Australian tax practitioner specializing in the taxation of financial services and in State Taxation. He is a former tax partner at Herbert Smith Freehills. Prior to commencing legal practice in 1988, Steven practised for 12 years as an economist and was a senior Victorian Treasury officer. He is also a member of the American Bar Association and The Tax Institute.

Dr Lynne Williams – Non-lawyer member
Lynne sits on several government boards at the State and Commonwealth level, and at the University of Melbourne, as well as undertaking a number of consultancies related to public policy. Lynne worked as an economist in the public sector for over 30 years, and is a former Under Secretary in the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF). Lynne also held senior executive roles within DTF; the Department of Innovation, Industry and Regional Development; the Department of Premier and Cabinet; the Productivity Commission; and the Bureau of Immigration, Multicultural and Population Research. Lynne has Masters degrees in economics from the University of Melbourne and the London School of Economics, a PhD from Monash University and is also a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Lynne was appointed to the Board by the Governor in Council in October 2013.

Mr Michael McGarvie – Chief Executive Officer
Michael was appointed as CEO of the Board in December 2009. Prior to this, Michael was the CEO of the Supreme Court of Victoria for 3 years. Michael practised as a solicitor at Holding Redlich for 23 years, where he specialised in personal injuries, civil litigation and dispute resolution. Michael is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Last modified December 21, 2016.