NRF elevates three women to Australian partnership

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Norton Rose Fulbright’s (NRF) Australian partnership will grow at the start of 2019 as the global giant has confirmed the promotions of Claire Forster, Lisa Koch, and Paulina Moncrieff.

The Sydney-based lawyers work across the firm’s competition, regulatory, project finance, and disputes practices, NRF said.

“Claire, Lisa, and Paulina have made strong cases for partnership in recent years, with a history of excellence in client service and high-quality advice across many of our major industry groups and busy practice areas. Each thoroughly deserves the promotion we are announcing today,” said Wayne Spanner, NRF managing partner in Australia.

He said that the partnership is also pleased with the progress of the push to increase diversity in the senior ranks of the firm. The firm recently set a 40:40:20 diversity-split goal for its leadership positions, with the 20% allotted for flex participation among women and men. It said it aims to achieve the partnership diversity goal, which the firm believes is the best way to deliver diversity across the business, as soon as possible after 2020.

“We were the first firm in Australia with more than 100 partners to break the 30% female partner barrier in December 2017, and are well on the way to hitting 35% in 2020,” he said.

The new partners have particular strengths in the energy, infrastructure, natural resources, insurance, and life sciences and health industries, NRF said.

Claire Forster

Forster, who is promoted from special counsel, is a competition and regulatory law specialist with a particular focus on the energy and infrastructure sectors. She advises on fundamental regulatory and access issues at all levels of the energy supply chain. Her work includes a number of high-profile renewable energy projects involving Canadian Solar, Wirsol, and the Maoneng Group.

Lisa Koch

Koch, who is qualified to practice in Australia, England, and South Africa, relocated last year from the firm’s London office where she was a senior consultant. She specialises in finance, covering both traditional and alternative financing structures, particularly on project finance and related transactions connected to the mining and resources, energy, and infrastructure sectors. She has a focus on international transactions, particularly on emerging-market resources financing.

Paulina Moncrieff

Moncrieff, who is elevated from special counsel, is an expert in insurance with a particular focus on health and liability claims. NRF said that she has extensive experience acting in defence of large, complex health claims across a range of medical specialties and jurisdictions, including the Supreme Court, the District Court, and the Coroner’s Courts of New South Wales and Queensland. Her practice has served the Medical Indemnity Protection Society, the Department of Health in Queensland, and the Ministry of Health in NSW. She is also a former lawyer of the NSW Crown Solicitors Office, where she gained general insurance experience.

The promotions follow those of partners Kelly Davies, Andrew Fisken, and Will Webster in June. This year, the firm has attracted 10 lateral partners in Australia. The firm expects to welcome partners Holly McAdam, Richard Morrison, and Martin Taylor from Sparke Helmore in January.

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