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Appointment of First Parliamentary Counsel

Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Media Release

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Meredith Leigh as the new First Parliamentary Counsel, the head of the Office of Parliamentary Counsel.

Ms Leigh brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the role having held a variety of positions at the Office of Parliamentary Counsel since 1998. She has been involved in the drafting of over 350 Commonwealth Bills and over 150 Commonwealth instruments.

The office of First Parliamentary Counsel plays an important role in the advancement and maintenance of high quality legislation. Ms Leigh is highly regarded and her appointment to this specialised role will be widely welcomed.

The Office of Parliamentary Counsel is the Commonwealth's principal provider of professional legislative drafting and publishing services. It provides drafting and advisory services for Bills, legislative instruments and other instruments, as well as comprehensive public access to Commonwealth legislation through the Federal Register of Legislation site.

Ms Leigh will commence her seven year appointment on 11 October 2021.

I take this opportunity to thank Ms Leigh for acting as First Parliamentary Counsel while the merit selection process was conducted.

On behalf of the Australian Government, I congratulate Ms Leigh on her appointment.


Ms Leigh holds a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws. She was admitted as a legal practitioner to the Supreme Court of NSW in 1997. Ms Leigh joined the Office of Parliamentary Counsel in 1998 and served as Assistant Parliamentary Counsel, Senior Assistant Parliamentary Counsel and First Assistant Parliamentary Counsel before being appointed as Second Parliamentary Counsel in 2016.