New Zealand Law Society - Sir Douglas White retiring from Law Commission

Sir Douglas White retiring from Law Commission

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Sir Douglas White is retiring as President of the Law Commission after three years in the role.

Justice Minister Andrew Little says Sir Douglas will stay on at the Commission until 28 June 2019 in order to assist with the completion of the Commission’s work on the review of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976.

Deputy President Helen McQueen will lead the Commission until a replacement for Sir Douglas can be found.  A process to find a permanent replacement will commence shortly.

“Sir Douglas White has had a distinguished career as a lawyer and Court of Appeal Judge, and I am pleased that he devoted his skills to lead the Commission for the time that he did. He has provided the Commission with able leadership during his tenure,” Mr Little says.

Sir Douglas was appointed President in May 2016, a few months after he was appointed as a Law Commissioner. He replaced Sir Grant Hammond as President.

After graduating LLM with first class Honours at Victoria University of Wellington, Sir Douglas was a litigation partner in predecessor firms to Kensington Swan before moving to the independent bar in 1986 and being appointed Queen's Counsel in 1988. He was appointed a Judge of the High Court on 24 August 2009 and to the Court of Appeal in February 2012 until his retirement in September 2015. 

He was Pro-Chancellor and Chancellor at Victoria University for nine years and also appointed to the Cook Islands Court of Appeal on 1 February 2016.