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Crown Law lists Queen's Counsel appointments since 1907

The Crown Law Office has published a list of Queen's Counsel appointments since 1907. Information is also provided on QCs who currently hold a practising certificate.

The list includes the latest round of appointments, made on 17 May 2013.

It shows that since the first appointments were made on 7 June 1907 of 10 King's Counsel, a total of 264 people have been appointed Queen's Counsel (the Crown Law list appears to miss out Claude Horace Weston, appointed on 8 March 1934).

Of these 22 (8.3%) are female, with the first appointment of a woman as Queen's Counsel occurring in 1988 when the Chief Justice, Dame Sian Elias and Justice Lowell Goddard were appointed. 

A few other interesting facts about New Zealand's Queen's Counsel:

  • Henry Hubert Ostler was appointed King's Counsel on 2 February 1925 - the same day on which he was sworn in as a Judge. This is unique.
  • From 1910 until the Law Practitioners Amendment Act 1915, King's Counsel were able to practise as solicitors if they so desired.
  • Thomas Mason Wilford, appointed King's Counsel on 29 October 1929, was immediately appointed High Commissioner to the United Kingdom and never practised law again. After this, Myers CJ required an undertaking that a new KC would continue in practice in New Zealand for at least five years.
  • The most QCs appointed in one year is 26 (9.8% of all appointments) in 2013.
  • In the 106 years since Queen's Counsel have been appointed in New Zealand, there are 40 years in which there were no appointments made. The longest gap between appointments was the seven year period between 1939 and 1946.
  • There have been 29 QCs appointed who have the first name "John" - 11% of all appointments. Other popular QC names are David (11), Robert (11), Peter (10) and Michael (8). For women, Helen (2) and Judith (2) are the most common first names. 
  • Of barristers still in practice, the longest practising Queen's Counsel is Anthony Molloy QC, who was granted the title on 14 June 1984 - 29 years ago.

Last updated on the 20th August 2013