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Deakin University appoints new dean of law

Victoria-based university Deakin has elevated its deputy dean to the position of dean of its law school – a role she has been acting in since May of this year.

user iconJerome Doraisamy 30 December 2023 Big Law
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Professor Marilyn McMahon (pictured) has been officially made dean of Deakin Law School, having acted in the role for the last seven months.

She has served as deputy dean since 2017.


Professor McMahon graduated from the University of Melbourne with a bachelor of laws and a bachelor of arts (honours) majoring in psychology, has a master’s degree in forensic psychology at Monash University, and a PhD in law (with distinction) from La Trobe University.

Furthermore, Professor McMahon is a registered psychologist. Her teaching and research are principally in the fields of criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence, Deakin University said in a statement, noting she has a particular interest in laws relating to domestic and family violence and is a co-convenor of the Deakin Network Against Gendered Violence.

Speaking about the appointment, the executive dean of Deakin’s faculty of business and law, Professor Jenni Lightowlers, said that Professor McMahon exemplifies Deakin Law School’s aspiration to be a catalyst for positive change through a progressive approach to scholarship, teaching, advocacy, and community engagement.

“Marilyn is respected by all who work with her for her passionate commitment to the law and how it can be used to support those in need. She is also a person of great integrity and a compassionate and caring colleague,” Professor Lightowlers said.

“At Deakin Law School, our staff blend deep expertise in legal research and practice, making significant contributions to the law, the profession, and to vital debates in our society. Marilyn is a true leader in how we use our expertise to make a meaningful change in the world.

“On behalf of Deakin, I want to congratulate Marilyn on this appointment. It is a positive endorsement of the sterling job she has done while acting in the role and that she will continue to do in the future.”