Nola Pearce

Nola Pearce

Without mentioning your job title, how would you describe what it is you do now?

I bring to legal problems my expertise in civil, administrative and professional disciplinary law – and the efficient and strategic management of litigation and legal problems – to advise and advocate for solicitors and clients who need my assistance.

What was your main driver to enter the legal industry?

Well…I would never call it a legal industry, because I consider law to be a profession, and it is that long-standing and noble combination of intense intellectual challenge, high ethical standards, and a humble attitude of service that has called me from the age of 12 (and still does!).

What are the first three words you think of when you hear the word ‘diversity’?

Different from yourself.

What do you think it will take to develop truly diverse thinking within the legal industry?

A combination of time, determination and humility. Firstly time, because every single step forward in diversity challenges the traditional thinking of “status quo represents merit” and “this can only be done by someone like me”. Secondly determination, because we have before us now more than enough evidence to prove those thoughts false, so we as a profession should be determined to move to a better model at a faster pace. Thirdly humility, to recognise the possibility that someone different from ourselves could have something fantastic and valuable to offer.

Nola is a barrister at Level Twenty Seven Chambers.

Justine Rowe

Justine Rowe

Without mentioning your job title, how would you describe what it is you do now?

I am a leader with a personal passion to inspire and develop diverse teams to make a difference to the business and each other.

What was your main driver to enter the legal industry?

I was curious about the legal industry and the court process from an early age and completed my Year 10 work experience at the Central Law Courts in Perth. I have always enjoyed engaging with people and helping to solve problems.

What are the first three words you think of when you hear the word ‘diversity’?

Difference and inclusion

What do you think it will take to develop truly diverse thinking within the legal industry?

Diverse representation throughout the industry. For some, we need to see a model of our diverse selves in our leaders to feel safe to share our thinking. For others, it is the environment that our colleagues create for us to be open. Ultimately I think we need to continue to challenge ourselves to develop an industry where everyone is open to, and embracing of, difference (in its many forms) – where we are respectful in our curiosity and challenge of others.

Justine is  Chief of Staff and Legal Services Executive of Telstra Corporation.

Natalia Blecher

Natalia Blecher

Without mentioning your job title, how would you describe what it is you do now?

I assist clients to defend and enforce their brands and related intellectual property assets.

What was your main driver to enter the legal industry?

I’m embarrassed to say I had no real driver. My decision to study law was initially made for want of any other clear passion. However, in the process of studying law, I developed a bit of an affinity for it. I have always been a critical thinker and have always loved writing. I realised that I could deploy both skill sets to achieve very real outcomes for clients. That’s what I do now, and that’s one of the most satisfying parts of my job.

What are the first three words you think of when you hear the word ‘diversity’?

Empty corporate mantra.

What do you think it will take to develop truly diverse thinking within the legal industry?

Diversity of people breeds diversity of thinking. You simply will not achieve diversity within the legal industry until there is a critical mass of individuals at the top levels of organisations who themselves demand, and therefore model, diverse thinking.

Natalia is a Lawyer at Gilbert + Tobin

Terri Mottershead

Terri Mottershead

Without mentioning your job title, how would you describe what it is you do now (whether at home, work, in the community, etc.)?

I create opportunities for lawyers and allied professionals to come together to prepare for, understand, and share experiences about how legal practice is transforming and how that practically impacts them, their clients, firms/organisations and people every day.

What are the first three words you think of when you hear the word ‘diversity’?

Opportunity, creativity, joy.

What do you think it will take to develop truly diverse thinking within the legal industry? 

Accepting, respecting and collaborating with each other as an interdisciplinary team in an interdisciplinary legal business.

What was your main driver to enter the legal industry?

To help make the law accessible and relatable for my clients.

Terri is Executive Director at the Centre of Legal Innovation