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WA appoints new deputy SAT president, District Court judge

West Australian Attorney-General John Quigley has appointed a new deputy president of the State Administrative Tribunal, as well as a new judge for its District Court.

user iconJerome Doraisamy 12 February 2024 The Bar
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Judge Fiona Vernon has been named as the new SAT deputy president, filling the vacancy left by new Supreme Court Justice and former District Court judge Kate Glancy.

She began a five-year term on 7 February.

Judge Vernon was appointed to the District Court six years ago, following over three decades in the private sector. She then joined the Bar in 2010, practising out of Francis Burt Chambers. She has also served, the A-G’s Department noted in a statement, as chair of the Child and Adolescent Health Service Human Research Ethics Committee and deputy convener of the Law Society of Western Australia’s ethics committee.


Speaking about the appointment, A-G Quigley said: “Judge Fiona Vernon is highly regarded in the legal profession, and her appointment reinforces the State Administrative Tribunal’s judicial leadership.

“With an extensive legal career spanning more than 30 years prior to becoming a judge, she will enhance the tribunal’s resolution of matters as it manages high caseloads. Judge Vernon has served as a District Court judge with distinction and is very well qualified to preside as deputy president of SAT.”

Elsewhere, the A-G has appointed the magistrate, Genevieve Cleary, as a judge of the state’s District Court.

Ms Cleary was admitted to practice in both Western Australia and Victoria in 1990 and spent the first 11 years of her legal career as a solicitor in private practice and at Legal Aid WA. Prior to being appointed as a magistrate in 2020, she served as a barrister and has also been a state prosecutor at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Her Honour commenced in the role on 8 February.

A-G Quigley noted: “Magistrate Cleary is highly regarded in the legal field, and I am pleased to see her appointed as a judge of the District Court of Western Australia. Her extensive experience as both a magistrate and a barrister across criminal law, youth justice, family, and civil law makes her an ideal choice to preside over District Court matters.

“She has also made significant contributions to education and mentoring in the legal field.”