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Our Patron and Board

Our Patron

The Honourable Tony Fitzgerald AC QC photoThe Honourable Tony Fitzgerald AC KC

"I'm proud to be associated with the Grata Fund at this critical time for our democracy. Thanks to the Grata Fund, Australians are better able to hold politicians and corporate leaders accountable in court when they fail to adhere to basic principles of accountability and good governance."

Tony Fitzgerald is an iconic legal figure who, over the course of his distinguished career as a barrister and judge, has brought about significant reforms to standards of government accountability, transparency and adherence to the rule of law in Australia. He presided over the Fitzgerald Inquiry into corruption in Queensland’s police force and politics. He has been a Member of the Australian Law Reform Commission and was the Inaugural Chairman of the Queensland Litigation Reform Commission. Among his many governance positions, he was the Chairperson of the National Pro Bono Resource Centre and the Chairperson of the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW. He now practices in mediation, arbitration, and expert determinations in Australia, China, Hong Kong and Singapore, specialising in corporate and commercial law.

Our Board

Deanne Weir


Deanne Weir

Deanne Weir is a former media lawyer and senior executive turned film producer, investor, and company director.  An accomplished and globally respected business leader, strategist and communicator, Deanne has over 30 years of experience in the media, communications, and technology sectors. Deanne’s private investment group invests in entrepreneurs and storytellers to help them change the world. After 14 years, Deanne retired in February 2024 as Chair of Ai-Media, an ASX listed technology company (ASX: AIM). Deanne has been Chair of Seer Data & Analytics since July 2018. 

A board member and then Deputy Chair of Screen Australia until 2016, Deanne was instrumental in the development of its Gender Matters program. Deanne was Chair of the Sydney Film Festival until November 2023, and is a Trustee of the global NGO The Asia Foundation. 

Through WeirAnderson Films and Storyd Group Deanne invests in Australian female creatives making feature films for international audiences, with Deanne acting as Executive Producer on many projects.  Deanne leads The WeirAnderson Foundation, a private ancillary fund with a strong focus on gender equality, cultural institutions, and social justice.

Deanne spent over 20 years as an executive in the media and communications sector across Australia and New Zealand, from her early days as a regulatory lawyer at Telstra, to pivotal senior executive roles at Austar and Foxtel, all of which were intensive preparation for her life as a company director and Chair. Her significant span of influence has included content creation and acquisition, business strategy and transformation, legal, regulatory and government affairs, mergers and acquisitions, exploration of new forms of digital media and development of new technology.  Deanne is a frequent public speaker, sought after board advisor and trusted mentor.

Jess Hill


Named marie claire’s 2023 Changemaker of the Year, Jess Hill is a journalist, author and educator who has achieved global renown for hergroundbreaking work on gendered violence. Her journalism in this area has won two Walkley awards, an Amnesty International

 award and three Our Watch awards. 

Her first book ‘SEE WHAT YOU MADE ME DO’ became a bestseller and was awarded the 2020 Stella Prize and the ABA Booksellers Choice non-fiction book of the year (and was shortlisted for several other awards, including the Walkley Book Award and the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards). It has been translated into five languages and is ranked the highest-rated book by any Australian author by readers on Goodreads. In 2021, Jess presented a three-part television series adaptation of the book for SBS, which became the highest-rating factual program in the network’s history.

Since then, she has written a Quarterly Essay on how #MeToo is changing Australia, produced a podcast series on coercive control titled The Trap, and has produced and presented a three-part series on Consent, titled Asking For It. In her work as an advocate against gendered violence, Jess has made hundreds of media appearances and has fronted more than 350 events across the country, addressing community audiences as well as educating magistrates, police, health and family law professionals on coercive control.

Jennifer RobinsonJennifer Robinson


Jen Robinson is a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers in London with a broad practice in media law, public law and international law. She has appeared before the International Court of Justice, has given expert evidence at the UN and regularly engages with UN Special Mechanisms. Many of her cases and clients are high-profile and involve novel cross-jurisdictional and comparative law issues.

Jen has a particular focus on free speech and civil liberties, advising media organisations, journalists and whistleblowers and issues associated with journalist safety, unlawful detention and targeting. Her recent international advisory work includes advising the UN Special Rapporteur in relation to the investigation into the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, acting for the International Federation of Journalists in relation to attacks on Palestinian journalists, and advising Julian Assange and WikiLeaks in relation to US extradition proceedings.

She has committed part of her practice to climate change work, which has so far involved advising small island states on international law and climate, successfully challenging a sweeping anti-protest injunction to prevent protests against fracking and having the UK’s fracking policy declared unlawful on climate change grounds.

Before joining the UK Bar, Jen created the Bertha Justice Initiative, a global program to support strategic public interest and human rights litigation and educate the next generation of movement lawyers. Jen serves as a trustee of the Bureau for Investigative Journalism and on the advisory boards of the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights and the Bonavero Human Rights Institute at Oxford University.

Dr Peter Cashman


Dr Peter Cashman is a barrister and an Adjunct Professor of Law at UNSW Law. He was previously Professor of Law and Director of the Social Justice Program at the University of Sydney Law School. He has practised in Australia, the UK and the United States, and holds a Law degree and a Diploma in Criminology from the University of Melbourne and an LLM and a PhD from the University of London.

He has made significant contributions to law reform through his role as Commissioner with the Victorian Law Reform Commission in charge of the Civil Justice Review, and as a Commissioner with the Australian Law Reform Commission on its reference on class actions (jointly with Justice John Basten).

He was the founder and senior partner of Cashman & Partners, which merged to become Maurice Blackburn Cashman (now Maurice Blackburn Pty Ltd). He was the founding director of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre and more recently has served on the boards of PIAC and the Public Interest Law Clearing House (now Justice Connect). In addition, he has authored many publications about social justice law, class actions and public interest litigation, including Class Action Law and Practice, The Federation Press, 2007.

Scientia Professor George Williams AO photoScientia Professor George Williams AO


George Williams AO is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Planning and Assurance, Anthony Mason Professor and Scientia Professor at UNSW. He has served as Dean of UNSW Law and held an Australian Research Council Laureate Fellowship and visiting positions at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto, Columbia University Law School in New York, and Durham University and University College London in the United Kingdom.

He has written and edited 37 books, including Australian Constitutional Law and Theory, The Oxford Companion to the High Court of Australia and Human Rights under the Australian Constitution. He has appeared as a barrister in the High Court in many cases over the past two decades, including on freedom of speech, freedom from racial discrimination and the rule of law. He has also appeared in the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal of Fiji, including on the legality of the 2000 coup.

His experience in higher education includes serving as Chair of the Australian Laureate Fellowships Selection Advisory Committee for the Australian Research Council. He was an invited member of the inaugural ERA Research Evaluation Humanities and Creative Arts Committee. He also led a Centre of Excellence bid.

George is a well-known media commentator on legal issues. He has been a columnist for the Sydney Morning Herald and Canberra Times and an on-air analyst for ABC Television. He is currently a columnist for The Australian, and reviews science fiction and fantasy books for The Weekend Australian and The Bookshelf on ABC Radio National.

George was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2011: ‘For distinguished service to the law in the fields of anti-terrorism, human rights and constitutional law as an academic, author, adviser and public commentator.’

Simone Whetton photoSimone Whetton


Simone Whetton is a partner in the corporate team at Colin Biggers & Paisley. Simone's expertise is in corporate transactions and corporate advisory, with a focus on unlisted companies across key industry sectors including transport and logistics, manufacturing, pharmaceutical and healthcare, energy and resources and technology, telecommunications. Simone also advises in respect of outsourcing and procurement issues.

Simone is a fluent German speaker and acts for many German and foreign companies operating in Australia. She is a member of the Australian German Chamber of Industry and Commerce. Simone became partner at the legal practice in 2014.

Isabelle Reinecke

Executive Director

Isabelle founded Grata Fund to unlock the power of the law to fight systemic injustice. Based at UNSW, Grata has supported communities to bring litigation to force corporate accountability on climate change, expose abuse in offshore refugee detention centres, and establish legal rights to humane housing in remote First Nations communities; and has facilitated over $1M in philanthropic case funding.

Isabelle is a Churchill Fellow and the 2021 Women's Leadership Institute of Australia Fellow, awarded to women "who are leaders in their respective fields, women who have innovative approaches and the courage, conviction and capacity to create real change". Previously Isabelle was Legal & Governance Director, GetUp and Solicitor, Clayton Utz




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