- Lawyer, Legal officer and Solicitor
Rebecca Irwin holds the position of Senior Manager Government Relations and Public Policy at the global resources company BHP Billiton. An experienced leader and negotiator, she has served in the upper echelons of Australian government, including the Attorney-General's Department and as a Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister, since graduating with first-class honours in Law from the University of Sydney in 1995. In May 2000, Ms Irwin made history when she became the first Australian woman lawyer to address an international tribunal, in her capacity as counsel for Australia in the Southern Bluefin Tuna Case against Japan. She has been a first assistant secretary in the Department of Immigration and Citizenship and in the Department of Agriculture; she has also been a senior executive working on national security and law enforcement policy with the Australian Federal Police and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra. A former associate to the Hon. Justice Margaret Beazley (later AO) of the Federal Court of Australia, Sydney, Ms Irwin practised as a solicitor at the law firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques. The recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship, she has a Master of Laws from Harvard Law School in the United States.
Rebecca Irwin was interviewed by Kim Rubenstein for the Trailblazing Women and the Law Oral History Project. For details of the interview see the National Library of Australia CATALOGUE RECORD.