Law Society congratulates Jason Behrendt
2019 President's Medal recipient
The Law Society of NSW congratulates Jason Behrendt, Managing Director of Chalk & Behrendt, Lawyers and Consultants, winner of the prestigious Law Society of NSW President’s Medal 2019.
The President’s Medal is an annual award that recognises significant personal and professional contributions to the betterment of law and justice in the community by a NSW solicitor and member of the Law Society of NSW.
President of the Law Society of NSW, Elizabeth Espinosa, said the 2019 President’s Medal has been awarded to Jason in recognition of his significant personal and professional contribution to the betterment of law and justice in the community.
“Jason, who is also the Chair of the Law Society’s Indigenous Issues Committee, is known nationally for his work empowering Indigenous communities,” Ms Espinosa said.
“The President’s Medal is a fitting acknowledgement of Jason’s outstanding contribution to the development of law and policy affecting Indigenous Australians during the past two decades, whether in the courts, as a policy advisor to government or as a member on a multitude of professional committees.
“Jason’s approach to the law has helped instil community confidence in the justice system and the courts as a forum for redress.”
In accepting the President’s Medal, Jason thanked the Law Society of NSW and acknowledged its commitment to justice for indigenous people.
“It is obviously a great honour to be nominated for the medal, let alone to win it,” he said.
“The fact it is a recognition by my peers in the legal profession is overwhelming, especially given there are so many legal practitioners who do fantastic and selfless work who would be deserving of this award.”
“My cultural background and upbringing and the desire to work with Aboriginal communities was a significant reason for commencing legal studies and to enter into legal practice in the first place.
“It has also led to the strong interest in land rights, native title and cultural heritage which has been the primary focus of my legal practice and is likely to continue to be a primary, but not the only, focus.”
About Jason Behrendt:
Jason joined Andrew Chalk Associates in 1996, the predecessor of Chalk & Fitzgerald which became Chalk & Behrendt in 2017. He previously worked for the Office of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner at the Commonwealth Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission.
An Aboriginal person himself, Jason has acted for many years as an external adviser to Aboriginal land councils and representative bodies across the nation. He has extensive knowledge and experience in relation to land rights, native title law and natural resources law.
Highlights of Jason’s career have included his involvement in:
- Many successful Aboriginal land claim appeals in NSW, including the first appeal to be dealt with by the High Court
- The successful Wellesley Islands native title (seas) claim on behalf of the Lardil, Kaiadilt, Yangkaal and Gangalidda Peoples
- The successful native title claim made on behalf of the Githabul people of north-eastern NSW
- Jason is a board member of the Law and Justice Foundation and Chair of the Law Society of NSW Indigenous Issue Committee.
Sue Finn | Media and Public Relations Manager
The Law Society of New South Wales
T: +61 2 9926 0288 | M: +61 413 440 699 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org