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Michael Kirby Lecture to host President of National Native Title Tribunal - 13/07/2017

Raelene Webb QC. Image credit: Philip Gostelow Photography When she addresses the audience at this year's Michael Kirby Lecture at Southern Cross University, the president of National Native Title Tribunal Raelene Webb QC will speak to the values of 'shared country, shared future'.

The 11th Annual Michael Kirby Lecture Series and Cocktail Reception, to be held on the Gold Coast campus on Thursday July 20, will coincide with the 25th anniversary celebrations of Native Title Recognition in Australia.

Ms Webb said she will be honoured to deliver her keynote address on 'Native Title Re-Imagined: The Perspective of Justice Kirby' in the presence of The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG himself.

"After attending the 10th Annual Michael Kirby lecture last year and presenting at Southern Cross University's Research Week celebrations I am thrilled to return to Queensland to speak on the contribution of Justice Kirby to the development of native title law, fittingly on the 25th anniversary of Native Title Recognition," Ms Webb said.

"South-east Queensland has an important and rich history in Indigenous culture. Our country, including the Gold Coast, has so much to gain and learn from a deeper understanding of Indigenous connection to land and waters, which we will delve into during the lecture."

Justice Kirby, a former Justice of the High Court of Australia, is internationally recognised for his work in human rights, particularly the Native Title Wik case of 1996.

He will take part in a meet-and-greet with law students from Southern Cross University before the lecture named in his honour at 6pm, hosted by the Southern Cross University School of Law and Justice.

Brendan Swan, president of SCULA, the University's Gold Coast-based student law association, said it would be an honour to meet Justice Kirby.

"It will also be an opportunity to celebrate SCULA's award from the Australian Law Students' Association (ALSA) Conference for the Greatest Community Contribution out of all Australian university law societies," he said.

Also in attendance at the Kirby lecture will be former President of the Queensland Court of Appeal The Hon Margaret McMurdo AC, Southern Cross University Deputy Chancellor Mr John Shanahan, the University's Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research) Geraldine Mackenzie, Head of School of Law and Justice Professor William MacNeil, and Professor Bee Chen Goh also of the School of Law and Justice.

Professor Goh, who is the convenor of the Kirby Lecture, said the popular lecture and cocktail reception have both sold out, with more than 120 attending.

"It is an honour for Southern Cross University to once again host Justice Kirby and hear from Raelene Webb, a prominent lawyer in the areas of Indigenous justice, human rights and social policy," she said.

The following evening, on Friday, July 21, the University's Lismore-based law students society SCULSS will host its annual law dinner at Mantra Twin Towns from 7pm with a keynote address from Christine Smyth, president of the Queensland Law Society, on ‘The Future of the Legal Profession'.

SCULSS president Hilina Benson said it was a great opportunity for students and the legal profession to network in a social setting and hear from an inspiring guest speaker.

Tickets for the 2017 SCULSS Law Dinner start at $45 and can be purchased by emailing

Media contact: Jessica Huxley, media officer, Southern Cross University Gold Coast, 0417 288 794.

Photo caption: Raelene Webb QC. Image credit: Philip Gostelow Photography

High-resolution image available on request.

For further information, please contact:
Communications and Publications
Southern Cross University
PO Box 157 • Lismore NSW 2480 • Australia
T +61 2 6620 3508 • e