West Australia has named Jones Day partner Michael Lundberg as the first Aboriginal judge on the state’s Supreme Court.
His appointment follows in the footsteps of his mother, Yamatji woman Sue Gordon, who was WA’s first Aboriginal magistrate, serving 20 years on the Children’s Court bench.
“This is a landmark appointment for the State’s justice system and another step towards closing the gap with First Nations people,” WA Attorney General John Quigley said in a statement.
“He is recognised as one of Australia’s best lawyers in his areas of expertise, which include dispute resolution in the energy and resources sectors, intellectual property law, industrial relations and defamation matters.”
Lundberg, a leading commercial litigator and arbitration lawyer, started his career in 1994 as a solicitor and then assistant Crown counsel at what was then WA’s Crown Solicitors Office.
He went into private practice in 2000 at King & Wood Mallesons, where he became a partner and worked for 18 years. His positions there included head of the dispute resolution group and partner in charge of the Perth office. He was subsequently a Perth-based partner at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan before joining Jones Day.
Lundberg has taken on various pro bono matters for indigenous individuals and groups, including representing Aboriginal man Gene Gibson, whose wrongful conviction for manslaughter was overturned by the Court of Appeal in 2017.
He will join the Supreme Court bench on 28 November, 2022.