OWLS 2016 AGM: 23 February 2016

The OWLS Annual General Meeting was held on Tuesday 23 February 2016 at Ombrellos Bar and Restaurant. The meeting was well supported, with a good turnout of members. The AGM began with members catching up with each other over drinks and nibbles, before the business part of the evening began. Firstly, the 2016 Committee was established. We have a full OWLS Committee once again this year, with four new committee members, Val Farrow, Kylie Hope, Shayne Milne, and Louise Trevena-Downing, joining the Committee. Kate Fallow (nee O’Boyle) has stepped off the Committee this year after many years of OWLS service (two as Convenor), as has Jess Withnall. We thank them both for their service and contribution to the Committee.

As well as general business matters, discussions were also held about a special celebration gala to mark the 30th Anniversary of OWLS and the ongoing archiving/history project.

After the formal part of the meeting was concluded, members stayed on for dinner, during which SDHB Commissioner Kathy Grant delivered an extremely positive and inspiring presentation about her experiences in her position thus far. All in all the AGM was a very successful and enjoyable event.



Are you looking for a new challenge for 2016? New to Dunedin? Have you been on the Committee before?


OWLS is looking for new and experienced practitioners to join the 2016 OWLS Committee. OWLS aims to provide networking and educational events for female practitioners in Otago. The Committee represents the diverse needs of our members and we need your help to achieve this!

2016 is OWLS 30th Birthday so we have some exciting plans for the year ahead. Now we just need a passionate team to put our ideas into action!


Please fill in the following nomination form: OWLS Nomination Form 2016

If you have any questions please email OWLS at members.owls@gmail.com or phone Lizzie McKenzie on 03 474 3529

Suffrage Day Breakfast: 18 September 2015

On Friday 18 September OWLS hosted the annual Suffrage Day Breakfast, which was held at Ironic Café. Our guest speaker this year was the inspirational Deborah Manning, the CEO of Foodshare, a unique food rescue business that redistributes food that would otherwise be wasted to people in need via service organisations. It was fascinating hearing about how Deborah set up this business and shocking just how much food was previously wasted by commercial businesses in Dunedin. The 30 OWLS members present left feeling full from the delicious breakfast and very inspired say the least. Thank you Deborah for taking the time to speak with us. I am sure you will get some OWLS volunteers as a result.

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Diversity in the Law Event: 3 September 2015

On Thursday 3 September OWLS and the Otago Branch of the New Zealand Law Society jointly hosted an interactive panel discussion on Diversity in the Law in the Otago Branch Meeting Rooms and how improving it can greatly benefit businesses. Our own Bridget Irving very ably chaired the panel discussion and the panelists consisted of Chris Moore (the President of the New Zealand Law Society), Megan Bartlett, Phil Page, and Taryn Gudmanz. There were nearly 50 people present, which was a fantastic turnout. We would like to thank Bridget and all of the panelists for their frank, insightful, and humorous comments, which were well received by all present. We are especially grateful that Chris Moore came down from Auckland for the event. The event certainly fueled a lot of interesting discussion during the drinks and nibbles afterwards and left people with a lot to think about.

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Celebratory Drinks and Nibbles for Judge Harrison: 11 August 2015

On Tuesday 11 August OWLS was delighted to host drinks and nibbles at Ombrellos Café and Bar to celebrate Judge Harrison’s judicial appointment to the New Plymouth District Court. Many OWLS members were present to join in the celebrations and to wish Judge Harrison well in her new role. This was a very special event for everyone involved. Congratulations again Judge Harrison! We are so happy for you.

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Standing for the Otago Regional Council and the Standards Committee: 23 July 2015

On Thursday 23 July OWLS hosted an interesting educational event at the Otago Branch Meeting Rooms informing members about what is involved in standing for the ORC and the Standards Committee with the aim of encouraging more women to apply for these important roles. We are extremely grateful to Louise Croot from the Otago Regional Council and Janie Kilkelly, NZLS Legal Standards Officer (alongside Teresa Chan) for giving up their time to speak to us and for making such interesting and informative presentations. The OWLS in attendance certainly left knowing a lot more about both organisations and hopefully will be heartened to apply for these roles as they become available. One memorable fact we all learnt from Louise at the ORC was about the growing wallaby problem in Otago – who knew!?

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OWLS Archiving Event: 16 July 2015

On Thursday 16 July a small but dedicated group of OWLS members attended our first archiving event at Gallaway Cook Allan where we delved into our historic records in preparation for the History Project for our 30th Anniversary next year. Those who attended the event were rewarded with the opportunity to see a whole host of old treasures – some of which were rather entertaining as the photos illustrate! We are grateful for those members who have donated their OWLS archives to us (especially Donna Buckingham who had already organised all of her material into folders) and we remind those of you who still have such things stashed away in your offices to get in touch with us.

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Mid-Winter Christmas Dinner: 9 July 2015

On Thursday 9 July OWLS hosted our annual mid-winter Christmas dinner, which this year was held at Café Rue. Members once again enjoyed a glass or two of mulled wine (due to its roaring success last year) to warm us up on a chilly Dunedin evening. It was great to see some new faces at this event, alongside our regular event-goers. Dessert was a great hit – especially the chocolate one accompanied by a shot of liquor! Everybody seemed to enjoy having a good catch up as usual and we look forward to holding this event next year.

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2015 Wise OWLS Lunchtime Forum #1: 10 June 2015

On Wednesday 10 June OWLS hosted our first Wise OWLS Lunchtime Forum of the year in the Anderson Lloyd Boardroom. About 20 members attended the event and discussed a range of issues particularly relevant to newer members of the legal profession such as how to get the most out of mentoring, how to be accountable at work and what counts as appropriate work attire. These topics promoted a lively and frank discussion from all of those in attendance and we thank our Wise OWLS for their words of wisdom as always. We will have another Lunchtime Forum later in the year.


Pink Ribbon Morning Tea: 27 May 2015

On Wednesday 27 May OWLS hosted our annual Pink Ribbon Morning Tea at Gallaway Cook Allan to raise money to for the New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation. The event was well attended by members (dressed in a sea of pink attire!) and everyone enjoyed the scrumptious pink treats on offer. It turns out that this year’s Committee are quite handy bakers! The event raised a total of $389.60 ($60 more than last year) from donations taken on the day, donations made online, and the selling of leftover baking. A great team effort!

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