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Dr Judith Preston


Dr Judith Preston is a solicitor admitted to practice in New South Wales and the Northern Territory, since 1982. She holds a BA LLB from Macquarie University (1981) and a MEL from the University of Sydney (1994). Judith commenced work with the Northern Land Council (NLC) primarily representing Aboriginal Traditional owners in land claims in the Northern Territory and related to the needs of Aboriginal communities in the NLC area. She was instrumental in establishing the first public interest environmental law centre, the Environmental Defender’s Office (EDO), in NSW in 1984-85. Judith then worked in a number of leading legal practices including Baker & McKenzie, DLA Piper and undertook a range of commercial matters which included litigation. For the last twelve years she has taught at a range of educational institutions. Judith’s primary teaching is at Macquarie University in a variety of environmental law subjects at undergraduate and postgraduate level. She has completed a PhD at Western Sydney University researching the question of how Indigenous knowledges can be effectively integrated into environmental decision-making to achieve both beneficial outcomes for environmental protection and Indigenous self-determination. She is also the Chairperson of the John Mac Foundation which was established to address some of the problems facing persons who have been displaced by social and environmental conflicts. Through the JMF scholarship fund, financial and mentoring support is given to tertiary scholars from refugee backgrounds make a successful transition from education into meaningful employment.