Five minutes with Justine Rowe, Global Enterprise and Services GC at Telstra.
What made you decide to become a lawyer?
I have had an interest in the law since high school, completing work experience at the Central Law Courts in Perth – I might have only been doing filing and admin at the time, but I found the whole environment exciting and wanted to learn more – clearly I needed to get out more… During law school I was more drawn to criminal practice but commercial is where I have landed. Engaging with people and problem solving still keeps me interested.
How long have you worked at Telstra and what brought you to this position?
After the excitement (or fizzer) of Y2K I moved from Perth to Melbourne to my first in-house position at CitiPower and Powercor Ltd. I joined Telstra in mid-2003 after being attracted to a role supporting one of Telstra’s largest business units – then known as Telstra Business & Government. I am still at Telstra and continue to be challenged.
What’s the strangest case you’ve ever worked on/been involved with?
A case relating to cork taint (although I still don’t think you can beat the lure of a real cork in a bottle of wine).
If you could invite three people for dinner, dead or alive and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
Franka Potente to talk about “Run Lola Run” over and over, Aaron Paul to share the tales of the brilliant Breaking Bad series and Will Farrell to do a lip sync replay after dinner of Queen B’s ‘Drunk in Love’
You’re based in Perth – where’s the best place to go for a drink and/or dinner after work?
Perth continues to develop and surprise - our offices in Perth are on the doorstep of Northbridge and the City so we are spoiled for choice. Nothing beats the glorious coastline though and I have enjoyed the Shorehouse in Swanbourne over summer.
What’s the best piece of advice (work or personal) you’ve ever been given?
Ask for 100% of what you want.
Do you have any hobbies/interests outside of work?
Our 7 year old daughter and 5 year old son seem to dictate our interests of late – so Saturday morning netball and Sunday morning Auskick. The beach is our favourite in summer and the coastal walks don’t go away any time of the year. Food, wine and travel are my faves though (along with dancing, but not as much these days I would like).
Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t a lawyer, I would be…
An actor – I have dabbled in amateur theatre and acting training, but working in-house with entertaining clients is keeping me engaged until Hollywood comes knocking.
What do you think will be single biggest issue facing the legal space in Australia in 2016?
If you had Malcom Turnbull’s job for one day, what would you do?
Take a deep breath, remember why I am here and go forth being the best, authentic self I can be – what comes next is meant to be.
What do you love about your job?
Engaging my with team and stakeholders – the law is ok, but people keep me motivated.
What would you change about your job right now if you could?
Wave my magic wand and create a land where work and play are equal.