Senior Solicitor, Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources

Length of service: 2 years

My journey so far

Originally from the Bahamas, I did my undergraduate studies in the United States before moving to the UK for Law school. I worked in England for another five years before moving to New Zealand where I worked in the public sector.

As Australia’s coolest city, Melbourne beckoned and I found my current job on this very website — Careers.vic. I now work as a Senior Solicitor at the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR).

My day-to-day work

My daily work involves providing public and administrative advice as part of DEDJTR's Legal Team. I’m usually responding to queries and working on advice about public and administrative law.

A lot of my work involves statutory interpretation —  I advise internal clients on the Government's statutory obligations and the rights and obligations of people affected by the legislation.

Sometimes I might respond to quick query that can be answered over the phone or a short form advice that can be dealt with by email. But often I'm juggling a number of pieces of long-form advice that require considerable research.

How my work contributes to the Victorian community

The work that I’m involved in, particularly the legislation, affects most people in Victoria. DEDJTR has one of the largest departmental portfolios, servicing nine ministers.

We are responsible for leading government policy to drive Victoria’s economic development, including primary industries like agriculture and fisheries, as well as transport. Our work affects people’s lives and livelihoods, and how they are regulated. 

For instance, I have carriage of a Bill in Parliament that will affect how numerous businesses are regulated. It will reduce administrative burden and operational difficulties, and even allow new businesses to be established. So while we do regulate industry, we also reduce red tape. 

Experiencing diversity and inclusiveness

One of the Department’s aims is diversity and inclusiveness. 

During the same-sex marriage plebiscite, it provided support for people who felt personally affected. During that time, rainbow lanyards were in hot demand and most people are still sporting them. 

I also recall pointing out a poster in our building that didn’t seem to reflect the Department’s ethos. A colleague contacted our Comms team and the poster was pulled down that same day and replaced. 

Opportunities like no other

Annual leave… at half pay!

Proud of my work

I’m proud of the work I do because I see the real effects of it every day.

I get a lot of satisfaction from helping my clients get what they need, even if it’s not always in the way they envisaged.

I’m proud that that my clients see me as a trusted advisor, that they know my advice will be robust. And that I will try to help them achieve their goals and come up with creative out-of-the-box solutions when necessary.

Join me in the Victorian public sector

The Victorian public sector is fairly progressive, much like Victoria. However, once you join, don’t sit on your laurels. There’s support, but you still need to manage your own career.

Don’t expect to stay in the same area forever. Move around to take advantage of promotion opportunities. Explore secondment opportunities, create your own secondment if necessary. Take charge of your career!

Finally, the money’s not bad. Yeah, you can make more elsewhere but our work serves a public purpose. When you work for the Government, you can make a real difference. And you can have a real impact on people’s lives.