Matt Floro

Matt Floro, President

Matt is a Special Counsel advising on environmental, planning, climate change and administrative law at EDO. He has practised environmental and planning law in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales and has worked in the public, private and non-profit sectors, including at the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet, Clayton Utz and Corrs Chambers Westgarth. Across his various roles, he has advised Federal and State government departments, private companies, community groups and individuals and has advised on the environmental laws of all Australian jurisdictions.  At EDO, Matt has had carriage of several groundbreaking cases, including the Rocky Hill climate action, the Bushfire Survivors climate action, the KEPCO Bylong climate action and major water litigation involving the upper Murray-Darling Basin.

Passionate about community, Matt has led Out for Australia Victoria, the Australian Law Students’ Association and his university law society. He currently serves as National Vice-President of the Asian Australian Lawyers Association. He holds undergraduate degrees in law and economics and master's degrees in law and public administration.

Dr Katie Woolaston

Dr Katie Woolaston, Vice President

Dr Katie Woolaston is an inter-disciplinary researcher, lawyer and lecturer in the QUT Law School. Dr Woolaston obtained her PhD in wildlife law and conservation conflicts from Griffith University in 2020 and holds a Masters in Law (specializing in Human Rights & Social Justice) from the University of New South Wales.

Dr Woolaston’s research is focused on international and domestic wildlife law and the regulation of the human-wildlife relationship. She is particularly interested in using the social sciences to resolve long-held and deeply-rooted attitudes and values that are contrary to conservation and embedding such processes in law and policy.

Dr Woolaston’s post-doctoral research is focused on dingo management and stakeholder collaboration on K’Gari-Fraser Island, and integration of OneHealth approached in wildlife trade in the wake of COVID-19. She was an expert on the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) panel concerning Biodiversity and Pandemics and is an Associate Editor of the Asia-Pacific Journal of Environmental Law.

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Tom Webb, Secretary

Tom is a final semester Bachelor of Laws (Honours) student at Macquarie University. Tom is also a Law Clerk with Piper Alderman and works on matters involving construction, planning and administrative law. As a former EDO volunteer, Tom assisted with the landmark Bushfire Survivors climate action and the KEPCO Bylong litigation. Passionate about climate law, Tom’s impending honours thesis analyses the legal responses to climate-related loss and damage in Australia.

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Ayumi Shimada, Treasurer

Ayumi is a paralegal at Climate Friendly and a volunteer legal researcher at Environmental Defenders Office. She has been admitted as a lawyer both in Australia and Japan. Ayumi was a commercial lawyer in Japan but she has a strong interest in corporate social responsibility for the environment, which made her decide to pursue a career path as an environmental lawyer. Ayumi is also a member of the Japan Environmental Lawyers Federation. Her dream is to build a bridge between Japan and Australia in the environmental law area. Ayumi loves trees and forests and is keen to bush care and forest management.
Jess Hamdorf

Jess Hamdorf, Past President, Director and 2021 Mahla Pearlman Young Australian Environmental Lawyer of the Year

Jess is a Senior Associate at Glen McLeod Legal, a Western Australian based law firm specialising in environment and planning law. Jess specialises in many aspects of environment, planning, and public law. She represents clients in appealing subdivision and development application refusals in the State Administrative Tribunal, clearing permit applications for native vegetation, disputes regarding developer contribution plans and public and private nuisance. Jess is also experienced in advising clients on issues related to the compulsory taking of land for public works, contamination of land, waste and general contractual disputes.

Jess has been recognised for her contribution to environmental law practice and teaching, NELA and the legal profession by being awarded the 2021 Mahla Pearlman Young Australian Environmental Lawyer of the Year.

She has a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science and International Relations) from the University of Western Australia, and lectures in Environment and Planning law at the University of Murdoch.

Tiphanie Acreman

Tiphanie Acreman, Director

Tiphanie is a barrister practicing at the Victorian Bar in the areas of property, planning, environment and building.  She grew up in Tasmania and became aware of the role of the law in the environmental context during primary school when the Tasmanian Dams case was handed down.

She has undergraduate degrees from the University of Tasmania in Law and Science, majoring in Geography and Environmental Studies, and a Master of Laws from the Australian National University.

Prior to becoming a barrister, Tiphanie worked as an Associate at the Supreme Court of Victoria, and at the federal Department of the Environment.  As a barrister, she has advised and appeared in environmental matters relating to the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (Cth) 1999, the Planning and Environment Act (Vic) 1987, and the Environment Protection Act (Vic) 1970.

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Dr Phillipa McCormack, Director

Dr Phillipa McCormack is a postdoctoral researcher in law at the University of Adelaide and adjunct lecturer at the University of Tasmania Law School. She researches in the areas of environmental law and public governance, with a particular focus on biodiversity conservation and climate change adaptation. Phillipa’s current projects include analyses of Australia’s legal and policy frameworks for bushfire, and the intersection between conservation and biosecurity laws for species redistributing in response to climate change. Phillipa began her career as a solicitor at Blake Dawson (now Ashurst Australia) and as an associate at the Supreme Court of Victoria, before undertaking her PhD at the University of Tasmania. She is a Global Associate with the Centre for Environmental Law and sits on the editorial boards of the Australian Environment Review; Frontiers in Climate: Law & Policy; and the Journal of International Wildlife Law & Policy. She is a member of the Governance Board for Tasmania’s southern regional body, Natural Resource Management (NRM) South and is a member of the Centre for Marine Socioecology, the Australian Forum for Climate Intervention Governance and the Tasmanian Policy Exchange.

 

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Nicola Beynon, Director

Nicola Beynon is Head of Campaigns for the Australian Office of Humane Society International, working for a humane and sustainable world for animals. HSI specialises in using Australian and international wildlife laws to advance its campaigns. Many of Nicola’s career highlights have taken place at treaty meetings or in court rooms, achieving wins for species as diverse as flying-foxes, sharks, whales, elephants, giraffes and Australian sealions.  One of a small team of conservationists who helped to negotiate passage of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Cth (EPBC) Act through parliament in 1999, she has worked closely with the legislation and advocated amendments to improve it ever since.

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Ruby Hamilton, Director

Ruby is a solicitor in the Safe Climate team at the Environmental Defenders Office. Ruby advises on a range of environmental and public law matters primarily relating to onshore and offshore gas projects, and represents community groups and individuals across Australia. She has also worked as a consultant drafting private members bills in the WA Parliament.

Ruby holds a Juris Doctor and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Australia.