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Kathryn Beck

Kathryn Beck


Kathryn is a partner at SBM Legal and President of the New Zealand Law Society. She was also the Chair of the panel appointed by NZ Rugby to undertake a Respect and Responsibility Review and now chairs the small Respect and Inclusion Advisory Panel set up as a result of the recommendations. She has a BCom (Labour Relations) and LLB from the University of Auckland and has over twenty seven years of practical legal experience.

Kathryn was previously a partner at Haigh Lyon, a firm with a strong tradition in employment law. Kathryn led the employment law team and was also Head of Litigation. Having acted for both major employers and also leading unions, Kathryn is able to bring a unique insight and objectivity to the issues confronting our clients.

She has acted in many leading cases and is a key adviser and facilitator in a number of ongoing, high level union-employer relationships. In addition to employment law, Kathryn’s practice area has developed to include health and education law. Her expertise is acknowledged by prestigious international legal publications Who’s Who Legal, Chambers Asia Pacific and Asia Pacific Legal 500.

Kathryn is also experienced in alternative dispute resolution and acts as a mediator, facilitator and has conducted independent investigations in the public and private sector. She has also acted as Chairperson and member of disciplinary committees in matters of student discipline for a large tertiary institution.

Kathryn has also had a leading role in the evolving legal framework – currently as President of the New Zealand Law Society and previously as a Vice President of NZLS, a Convener of the NZLS Employment Law Committee, a submitter for the Law Society to Select Committees on legislative change, educational road shows for the Law Society, and as a regular invited speaker at conferences. She is also on the Board of the Auckland Community Law Centre.

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