The Sydney Law School Foundation (SLSF) will tonight (19 October) commemorate the significant career of one of its graduates, the Hon James Spigelman AC QC.
The SLSF's annual event at the university's Camperdown campus will play host to Spigelman in celebration of his contribution to the law and social justice.
Members of SLSF, the Hon Chief Justice Tom Bathurst QC, Sydney Law School academics and the Dean, Professor Gillian Triggs, judges, current and past law students and other members of the legal profession will be in attendance.
Spigelman first graduated from the University of Sydney (USYD) in 1967 with a Bachelor of Arts, before going on to complete his LLB in 1971 and receive the University Medal in Law. He was awarded an honorary LLD in 2004.
As a student leader, Spigelman took an active role in the 1965 Freedom Rides to rural NSW alongside student activist Charles Perkins.
He was admitted to practise as a solicitor in 1972, but first served as senior advisor and principal private secretary to Prime Minister Gough Whitlam until 1975, when he was appointed secretary to the Department of Media.
On commencing his practice at the NSW Bar in 1976, three years after his admission, Spigelman served for several years as a member of the Australian Law Reform Commission and spent some time abroad.
While at the Bar, Spigelman focused mainly on constitutional law, administrative law and appellate work and, in 1986, was appointed Queen's Counsel.
He then served as Solicitor-General of NSW in 1997 before receiving his appointment as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 1998.
On 18 March 2011, he announced his decision to retire as Chief Justice and was succeeded on the bench by The Hon Justice Tom Bathurst QC.