Canberra, 14 November 2016: Clayton Utz lawyer Lauren Haywood was named Woman of the Year - Early Career at the inaugural ACT Women Lawyers Awards hosted by the Women Lawyers Association ACT (WLA ACT) in Canberra earlier this month.
Lauren was a joint winner of the award, which recognises her professional experience and accomplishments, her contributions to the wider legal profession and the community, and her support of her colleagues and other professional women.
Clayton Utz was also named joint winner of the Firm of the Year Award for our demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion and our leadership within the legal profession and the wider community.
Lauren was one of three Clayton Utz lawyers shortlisted for an individual Award. Canberra based Real Estate partner Danielle Mildren was a finalist for Woman Lawyer of the Year - Private category, and Public Sector lawyer Rachel Noronha was also a finalist for the Woman of the Year - Early Career category.
A senior lawyer in the Clayton Utz Workplace Relations, Employment and Safety practice in Canberra, Lauren has built a reputation as a key adviser in the team, servicing a range of clients including the University of Canberra, the Molonglo Group and a number of Australian Government Departments, advising on the full spectrum of workplace relations matters. Lauren is also active in pro bono, providing over 75 hours of pro bono support in FY16 to organisations including Lifeline, Inanna Inc. and the Women's Legal Centre ACT.
Executive Director at the Women's Legal Centre ACT Elena Rosenman, who supported Lauren's nomination, described her pro bono support as "invaluable to the Centre's sustainability, integrity and future growth". Of Lauren's approach to client service, Elena said "I have never had the feeling we are less important than any of Lauren's commercial clients. In fact it is quite the opposite. Lauren is immediately responsive, generous with her time and engaged and thorough in the work she does for us".
Lauren is also a Clayton Utz Mental Health Champion, promoting local mental health initiatives for Canberra, and a proud ally of the firm's LGBTI Alliance, as well as an active participant in the firm's national women's initiative, Momentum. Lauren also mentors aspiring young lawyers through Out for Australia and the ANU Women In Law Organisation.
Lauren said she was delighted with the recognition. "I am fortunate to be part of a team that has given me the opportunity and support to grow, thrive and make my own mark in the legal profession and the Canberra community. It is an absolute joy to come to work, knowing that my contribution is making a real difference."