A highly regarded advocate with a life-long interest in the arts, Fiona Phillip has spent 20 years advising government and the private sector on copyright law and policy issues. She brings to the Copyright Council a unique combination of commercial pragmatism, government experience and is one of the most knowledgeable copyright practitioners in the country.
Prior to leading the Copyright Council, Fiona was Special Counsel at independent commercial law firm Banki Haddock Fiora.
From 2007 to 2011, Fiona was the Assistant Deputy General Counsel at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), including responsibility for major litigation in the Federal Court and Competition Tribunal of Australia. While this role enabled Fiona to maintain an interest in copyright (overseeing the ACCC’s involvement in two matters in the Copyright Tribunal) she advised on infrastructure and regulatory issues in relation to industries as diverse as telecommunications, post, grocery, water, petrol, and energy.
Her life-long career in the law commenced with an associateship with the Hon Justice Gaudron in the High Court of Australia. Fiona then worked as a solicitor in the intellectual property group at Mallesons Stephen Jaques, acting for key commercial clients on a range of advisory and litigious matters. She was called to the Bar in 1996 and practised in intellectual property, constitutional, native title and general commercial law, appearing in the Supreme, Federal and High Courts.
In 1999 Fiona joined the Australian Attorney-General’s Department. There she worked on the Copyright Law Review Committee’s reference on the Jurisdiction and Procedures of the Copyright Tribunal, Copyright and Contract and Crown Copyright references. She was also instrumental in a number of major reforms including the Copyright Amendment (Moral Rights) Act 2000, the USFTA Implementation Act 2004 and the Copyright Amendment Act 2006.
In recognition for her work with AGD, Fiona was the recipient of an Australia Day Award. During this time she also represented the Australian Government on copyright issues at major international meetings WIPO, APEC and in free trade agreement negotiations.
She has been a member of the Intellectual Property Society of Australian and New Zealand since 1994 and as its Victorian chairperson and translational committee member 1997-1999, during which time she was also Secretary of the Equality Before the Law Committee of the Victorian Bar.
She has been a member of the Copyright Society of Australia since 1999, was a member of the Management Committee of the Society 2004-2007 and again from 2011 to present. Fiona has been published widely and is an experienced conference speaker.
Photo © René Norwie, 2014