The University of Adelaide - Barr Smith Press

Dame Roma

Glimpses of a glorious life


The life of Dame Roma Mitchell was filled with firsts: she became Australia’s first female Queen’s Counsel; first female judge of a Supreme court of South Australia; first woman Deputy Chancellor and then Chancellor of an Australian University; first woman in Australia to gain a vice-regal appointment as Governor of South Australia and the founding Chair of the Australian commission for Human Rights.

This social and legal history combines anecdotes and memories, sharing an insight into the private, yet also very public and much loved, Dame Roma. Tracing her childhood and brilliant legal career through to her tireless charitable works, Dame Roma’s caring generous nature and her courageous spirit make her truly inspirational.

Individual chapters by: Sir William Deane, Sir Harry Gibbs, the Honourable Len King, the Honourable Elizabeth Evatt, the Honourable Justice Mullighan, the Honourable Marcus Einfeld, Senator Amanda Vanstone, Judge Geoff Muecke, the Honourable Clyde Cameron, Professor Kevin Marjoribanks, Noni Farwell, Peter Bassett, Associate Professor Susan Magarey and Helena Jasinski.


A Legacy of Leadership - Celebration of the life of one of the greatest of all Australians. A life of wonderful achievements, including an incomparable number of nationally significant firsts. A life which blazed a trail for all Australian women – in law, in government, in academic life, in public and philanthropic service. A life which is an inspiration for all Australians. - Sir William Deane

Table of Contents

Sir William Deane

The Unveiling of the Dame Roma Mitchell Statute
Address by Sir William Deane

Susan Magarey and Helena Jasinski

Before the Bench
The Hon E P Mullighan

A Matchless Silk
The Hon Clyde Cameron

The Judicial Career of Dame Roma Mitchell
The Hon Len King

Memorial Service for The Late John Bray AC, QC

Justice Mitchell Presents Her Commission

On the Criminal Law and Penal Methods Reform Committee
Judge Geoff Muecke

The Web of Criminal Law

The Boyer Lectures 1975

The Retirement of Her Honour Justice Mitchell

Presentation of Acting Chief Justice

Human Rights
The Hon Marcus Einfeld

A Judge in Kiribati
Sir Harry Gibbs

‘I Shall Be a Member of The University All My Life’
Professor Kevin Marjoribanks

Dame Roma Mitchell and the Arts
Noni Farwell

Governor of South Australia
Peter Bassett

Dame Roma Mitchell’s appointment as Governor

Justices Association Dinner, Monday, October 12, 1992

A Woman’s Perspective
The Hon Elizabeth Evatt

Justices’ speech on the Death of Dame Roma Mitchell

Speech Index 1991-1996

A Good Friend
Senator Amanda Vanstone

The Girl Guides Association (South Australia) Inc.

Presentation of Awards

Golden Jubilee Mass and Dinner St Francis Xavier Seminary