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Russell Kennedy appoints 2 new principals

BigLaw firm Russell Kennedy is strengthening its Sydney office, having appointed senior lawyers as principals from KPMG Law and East Super, respectively.

user iconJerome Doraisamy 27 April 2023 Big Law
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Russell Kennedy has hired two new principals, both of whom will be based in the firm’s Sydney office.

Nick Finlayson joins from KPMG Law, where he led that global firm’s real estate and construction practice in Australia. He has also served as a partner at Bird & Bird and Truman Hoyle Lawyers. He will be part of Russell Kennedy’s property and development team.

Dermott Lynch comes over from East Super, where he was founder, chief executive and general counsel. Prior to this, he was a partner at Gadens. He is joining Russell Kennedy’s corporate and commercial team.


The news follows the firm’s unveiling of its 40:40:20 strategy for gender equality, in October 2022.

Mr Finlayson said that he is “thrilled” to be joining Russell Kennedy.

“I appreciate the firm’s client-centric approach and the care it shows its people. I look forward to collaborating with new colleagues to drive the development and success of the property and development practice in Sydney,” he said.

Russell Kennedy property and development practice group leader Mark McKinley added: “Nick is widely recognised as a leading property lawyer. He brings a wealth of experience to our growing team, adding depth in areas such as sales and acquisitions, development, design and construction, asset structuring and leasing. We know he will be a key adviser to our clients and a mentor to our people.”

Rohan Harris — who heads up the firm’s corporate and commercial practice — said that Mr Lynch is an “accomplished senior lawyer who specialises in all aspects of commercial law and litigation matters, acting for banking, investment and private equity clients both locally and abroad”.

“His appointment further strengthens our corporate and commercial offering in Sydney, allowing us to deliver the best outcomes for our clients,” he said.

Mr Lynch noted: “It is an exciting time to be joining Russell Kennedy, a firm with a rich history, committed to growing its commercial offering. I look forward to providing exceptional service to our clients with industry-leading colleagues.”

And Russell Kennedy managing director Paul Gleeson said: “Hiring Nick and Dermott demonstrates the firm’s commitment to expand and enhance our client service offering by recruiting top calibre talent. This represents yet another important step in our evolution.”