McKenzie (pictured) will take up the four-year post on March 4.
He has been the chief legal officer of the Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT) for the past eight years and, in 2011, was awarded the Law and Justice Foundation Justice Medal for outstanding achievement in improving access to justice.
McKenzie succeeds Steve Mark, who stepped down in June 2013 after 19 years in the role.
Since Mark’s resignation, Jim Milne has been the acting commissioner. Milne was previously the assistant commissioner (complaints) at the Office of the Legal Services Commissioner.
NSW Law Society president John Eades welcomed the appointment, describing McKenzie as “an excellent choice”.
“He is eminently qualified, with experience in senior posts including at the Public Interest Advocacy Centre and Legal Aid NSW,” he said.
“I am delighted that a respected senior solicitor of more than 36 years’ experience has been appointed to this important regulatory role.”