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Annual Report 2011 - 2012

Executive directors

Our senior management team is diverse and highly experienced, each director contributing to the strength of our organisation and helping to achieve our goals.

Bill Grant

Bill Grant CEO Legal Aid NSW

Chief Executive Officer (SES Level 6)
Budget Total: $242.3M
Staff: (FTE) 882.72
Total Actual: 965

Bill commenced as CEO of Legal Aid NSW in December 2011. Bill was appointed by the Attorney General, Greg Smith, and returns to the position of CEO after a four-year absence from the organisation. He served as head of Legal Aid NSW from 2001 to 2007.

For the past four years, Bill has been the Secretary-General of the Law Council of Australia. Bill worked at the Attorney General’s Department between 1988 and 2001, reaching the position of Deputy Director General.

In his first six months Bill reviewed the strategic position of Legal Aid NSW within the justice system and undertook a rigorous analysis of the budget position for the organisation.

Bill ensured the continued growth of early intervention under the National Partnership Agreement with the Commonwealth. He ensured Legal Aid NSW was an active participant in Justice Cluster initiatives.

For more information, see Appendix 1.

Patricia O’Farrell

Patrciia O'Farrell

Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Operations (SES Level 4)
Budget Total: $63.0M
Staff: (FTE) 759.09
Total Actual: 835

Patricia took up her position in March 2011.

Patricia commenced work as a lawyer in private practice in 1993. Since 2004, Patricia has worked as a lawyer and as a senior executive in the public sector in New South Wales, Western Australia and the Commonwealth. Prior to joining Legal Aid NSW, Patricia was an Assistant Secretary, and Director of the Legal Services Branch in the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing.

This year Patricia supported a range of mental health and wellbeing initiatives and oversaw a more strategic approach to the management of audit and risk for Legal Aid NSW.

Patricia also led the establishment of a Knowledge Management Group.

Kylie Beckhouse

Kylie Beckhouse

Accredited Criminal Law Specialist
Executive Director Legal Services Family Law (Senior Officer Grade 2)
Budget Total: $17.6M
Staff (FTE): 205.51
Total Actual: 226

Kylie was appointed Director of the Family Law Division in May 2009. Before then she held senior management roles throughout Legal Aid NSW, including in Central Sydney, Liverpool, Parramatta, Blacktown and the Child Support Service.

Her earlier experience includes seven years in private practice. She is an accredited specialist in family law. She was recently appointed by the Attorney-General to the Family Law Council of Australia.

Her division achieved a significant increase in the number of family law services delivered across New South Wales, including casework, duty, advice, minor assistance and community legal education. Included in that is a record number of family mediation conferences.

Kylie also launched a multimedia education package on family law issues and introduced a professional development program for all family lawyers.

Brian Sandland

Brian Sandland

Executive Director Legal Services Criminal Law (SES Level 2)
Budget Total: $31.0M
Staff (FTE): 284.68
Total Actual: 318

Brian has worked in private practice and then in Legal Aid NSW for 32 years, firstly in civil law for four years and then criminal law for the last 28 years. He has held senior management roles in regional offices and Central Sydney and been Director of the Criminal Law Division since 2003.

Brian oversaw the establishment of the Commonwealth Crime Unit to handle the large influx of people smuggling matters to New South Wales and laid the groundwork for a duty backup scheme in metropolitan Sydney Courts.

He also led the rapid response to the decision in Muldrock v Regina and continued to work with justice agencies and the courts to improve the efficiency of trials.

Richard Funston

Richard Fnuston

Accredited Criminal Law Specialist
Executive Director Grants and Community Partnerships (SES Level 2)
Budget Total: $117.9M
Staff (EFT): 98.97
Total Actual: 106

Richard’s earlier experience includes eight years with Victoria Legal Aid and four years as Principal Solicitor of the Inner City Legal Centre in New South Wales.

During his 15 years with Legal Aid NSW, Richard has held leadership roles across the organisation.

Richard has worked closely with private lawyers – improving communication, responding to their concerns and finding innovative solutions to their problems.

The Community Partnerships part of the division has built on the work of previous years and is now acknowledged by many workers in the community as a centre of excellence.

Monique Hitter

Monique Hitter

BSW Dip Law
Executive Director Legal Services Civil Law (Senior Officer Grade 1)
Budget Total: $14.3M
Staff (FTE): 172.33
Total Actual: 187

Monique has worked as a lawyer since 1997 in both the government and private sectors.

Monique developed the model for the Cooperative Legal Services Delivery Program and managed its pilot in 2004. It is now implemented in many regions across NSW.

Monique is currently a Director of the Public Interest Law Clearing House and has been the Director of the Civil Law Division since July 2007.

This year Monique established groundbreaking early intervention legal services in the areas of employment law and long-term financial hardship.

She set up two new specialist services: the Work and Development Order Service and a service for victims of sexual assault seeking to protect their privacy.

Her division also achieved a significant increase in the number of advice and minor assistance services, especially in regional New South Wales.

Annmarie Lumsden

Annmarie Lumsden

Accredited Criminal Law Specialist
Executive Director Strategic Policy Planning and Management Reporting (SES Level 2)
Budget Total: $1.7M
Staff (FTE): 19.6
Total Actual: 20

In her 15 years at Legal Aid NSW, Annmarie has held a number of senior roles including Director Grants, Executive Officer to the CEO, and Solicitor Advocate in the Criminal Law Division.

Her earlier experience includes seven years at the Legal Aid Office ACT, as well as working in private practice and government.

Annmarie’s key achievements this year were completing a major review of the Legal Aid NSW means test and securing an increase in the base hourly rate for fees paid to private lawyers in Commonwealth matters.

Clare Hamilton

Clare Hamilton

B Bus (Accounting) CPA
Executive Director, Finance (Senior Officer Grade 2)
Budget Total: $3.9M
Staff (FTE): 20.43
Total Actual: 21

Clare was appointed to this position in 2008.

Clare’s experience over 28 years includes senior roles in New South Wales government agencies ranging from Botanic Gardens Trust to Juvenile Justice and Education and Training.

A key achievement for 2011–2012 was the development of a new finance reporting system and major reconfiguration of the financial management system, to be implemented in 2012–2013.

Vicki Leaver

Vicki Leaver

BA Dip Ed
Executive Director People and Organisational Development (Senior Officer Grade 2)
Budget Total: $1.8M
Staff (FTE): 18.68
Total Actual: 20

Vicki was appointed as the Executive Director, People and Organisational Development in July 2011.

Vicki has had held senior roles in the public and private sectors after commencing her career as a primary school teacher.

Before joining Legal Aid NSW, Vicki held senior roles at RailCorp and the Department of Health.

A key achievement for 2011-2012 has been to develop a Health and Wellbeing Strategy for Legal Aid NSW.

Wayne Gale

Wayne Gale

BA (Computing) MCom (Accounting)
Executive Director, Information Technology Services and Records (Senior Officer Grade 2)
Budget Total: $4.3M
Staff (FTE): 33.02
Total Actual: 34

Wayne was appointed to his position in January 2007. During 2010-2011 his role expanded to include responsibility for records management. Wayne’s career in information technology spans 26 years, including senior roles both in the private sector providing information technology services and solutions to Government, and more recently working directly in the government sector.

Wayne has continued to progress initiatives outlined in our Information and Communications Technology Strategic Plan 2011–2013.

Major projects this year include the development of improved business intelligence systems, the implementation of a contemporary telephony and unified communications system across Legal Aid NSW, and piloting the use of mobile tablet devices with frontline staff.