Her Honour, AM
Kalamazoo, Michigan, United States
- Judge, Lawyer and Solicitor
- Alternative Names
- Bauman, Mary Ann (birth name)
Her Honour Mary Ann Yeats was the first US citizen admitted to practice law in Western Australia and the second woman, after Her Honour Antoinette Kennedy AO, to become a Judge of the District Court. After studying law at the University of Western Australia, she was admitted to practice in 1982 and worked in the Crown Solicitors Office, until she was appointed a judge in 1993. In 1995 she served as President of the Children's Court of Western Australia. She retired from the District Court Bench in August 2011.
As a judicial member of the Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration (AIJA) she spent 10 years as convener of the Indigenous Justice Committee, a group of judicial officers and Indigenous people working together to provide cultural awareness education to the judiciary throughout Australia. Appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in January 2014, for her significant service to the law, particularly Indigenous justice, she was initially uncomfortable about accepting the honour, feeling that the Indigenous people who helped her were not adequately recognised. She changed her mind when she realised how acceptance would draw attention to social justice issues that have been important to her throughout her personal and professional life.
Mary Ann Yeats was interviewed by Nikki Henningham for the Trailblazing Women and the Law Oral History Project. For details of the interview see the National Library of AustraliaCATALOGUE RECORD.