Fiona practises in commercial law including regulatory matters, consumer protection and financial services, common law including historical abuse claims and class actions, and public law matters including Royal Commissions appearing in jury and judge-alone trials and appeals. She has prosecuted and defended criminal maters including Work Health Safety and Commonwealth crimes including slavery charges.
She represented the Commonwealth in major cases including leading the legal team in the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission, Queensland Floods Commission and the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sex Abuse and regularly appears for the Department of Defence and Home Affairs. She led the legal team representing the successful plaintiff in the Murrindindi bushfire class action and the plaintiffs in the Don Dale class action.
Fiona is a leader of the national and international legal profession having led the Law Council of Australia, Australian Bar Association, Victorian Bar and Australian Women Lawyers. She is the Co-Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Council and an officer of the Bar Issues Committee of the International Bar Association and a member of the Council of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association.
She has been recognised as an outstanding advocate and leader of the profession and has chaired and contributed to numerous government Boards and Working Groups.
She has been a champion for diversity and inclusion and has received numerous awards, including for her contribution to the advancement of women and human rights issues, in particular, human trafficking. She was appointed to the Victorian Honour Roll of Women in 2014 and was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in the 2020 Australia Day Honours for ‘distinguished service to the law, and to the legal profession, at the national and international level, and to women lawyers’ .
Fiona graduated with Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Laws and Master of Public & International Law from the University of Melbourne. She completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Company Directors Course in 2017.
Fiona is actively engaged in supporting government and institutional transparency and integrity. She is the Chair of the Accountability Round Table and a former Chair of Transparency International Australia and the Open Government Forum.
ASIC v RI Advice, Civil penalty proceedings against RI Advice concerning cyber security risk management for financial services advisors and licensees
Pabai & Anor v Commonwealth, Landmark climate change class action on behalf of Torres Strait Islanders
PCB v Geelong College, Negligence claims, record damages awarded to survivor of child sex abuse
John XXIII College v SMA, Appeal against negligence for directing students off campus and response to assault claims
CDPP v Defence Workhealth and Safety charges concerning death of a solider in training exercise
CDPP v Defence Successful defence at trial of WHS charges, now on appeal, concerning electrocution of soldiers in training exercises
Disability Royal Commission Appearing for service provider Aruma Disability Services
McDonald v Commonwealth Class action claims for historic unpaid wages in the Northern Territory
Various plaintiffs v Commonwealth Claims by various employees working in offshore detention facilities on Manus Island
R v Kannan Slavery and domestic servitude
Sheridan v Australian Pacific Airports and Australian Federal Police Airport licensing, allegations of assault and false imprisonment
Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.