It was a very full house at the offices of Seyfarth Shaw in Sydney last Thursday evening for the presentation of the 2016 McCallum Medal, now in its 12th year. This prestigious annual public speaking competition, named in honour of eminent industrial relations lawyer and leading disability rights advocate, Emeritus Professor Ron McCallum AO, was this year won by Ashleigh Mills. The runner-up was Hugo Wilesmith.
The McCallum Medal Competition is for young lawyers and students who are interested in workplace and safety law and industrial relations. The topics presented by the five finalists in this year’s competition were wide-ranging and topical, including the question of whether domestic violence leave should be recognised in the National Employment Standards, and the future of road safety regulation in the wake of the demise of the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal.
Ashleigh Mills considered the place of long service leave in the context of modern Australian workplaces and work practices, while Hugo Wilesmith argued that uncapped damages should be available as a remedy in unfair dismissal cases.
Alongside Professor McCallum were fellow competition judges Fair Work Commission Vice President Joe Catanzariti, Fair Work Commission Senior Deputy President Lea Drake, and Rachel Bernasconi, Partner at Seyfarth Shaw.
The competition was organised by the NSW Young Lawyers Workplace and Safety Law Committee, and sponsored by Seyfarth Shaw, Thomson Reuters, the College of Law and HWL Ebsworth Lawyers.
Thomson Reuters is a proud and long-standing supporter of the competition. As well as company representatives being in attendance at the event, Ashleigh and Hugo both received book vouchers ($500 and $300 respectively) from Thomson Reuters (in addition to their other prizes), and Ashleigh’s article will be published in a forthcoming issue of Workplace Review.
Amelia Cooper, a lawyer at McCabes Lawyers, won the Thomson Reuters Lucky Door Prize: the latest copy of Fair Work Legislation 2016 – 17.
Congratulations to all those involved in organising the McCallum Medal Competition and the presentation evening – and special congratulations to all the finalists for their outstanding speeches!
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