We farewell Frank Godinet and welcome new President Brian Keene QC

Frank Godinet
Frank Godinet
                Brian Keene QC
Brian Keene QC

While Frank Godinet was planning, with typical modesty, on handing over the reins of the ADLS presidency quietly, we could not let this opportunity pass to thank him for the outstanding contribution he has made to ADLS during his term of leadership.

Frank Godinet was a member of ADLS’s Council for seven years (including one as Vice President), before assuming the role of President in April 2012. His practice spans over 30 years, and has taken him from Auckland and Papakura to London and back, and includes a wealth of experience in general litigation as well as acting as a youth advocate and lawyer for the child.

He is proud to leave ADLS as a “thriving independent voice of law for lawyers throughout New Zealand”. Amongst the key achievements of his tenure are the “stabilisation and invigoration of ADLS”.

“Brian will lead and take our organisation to another level for the benefit of members throughout New Zealand, building on the achievements of the new Council over the past two years with a new constitution and necessary operational changes, led by CEO Sue Keppel” ,  he says.

The one regret Mr Godinet has is that he was not able to see through to completion the new complaints advisory service to be offered by ADLS – however much hard work has been done towards getting this in place and he expects it will come to fruition within the next few months.

“The complaints service reflects the independent voice of law and it is exactly that independent voice that will be spoken when the service is in operation.”

In addition, Mr Godinet wished to acknowledge the contribution of Distinguished Member Nola Dangen who is also leaving Council.

“Nola has been a longstanding supporter of ADLS. This was her second stint on the Council, having previously served for a term of eight years ending in the eighties (including a period serving as Vice President). Nola returned to stabilise ADLS and contributed greatly to where we are today, always with the members’ benefit at heart.”

He went on to say: “It has been an absolute privilege to serve the organisation and to be involved in building relationships with all the relevant bodies, such as the Government, the Ministry of Justice, the judiciary and tertiary institutions.

“For me, it has been about continuing to foster the collegiality of the profession, which these days is constantly under pressure, and promoting and maintaining good will, both between members of the profession, and between the profession and the public.”

While saying farewell to Mr Godinet, and wishing him well in the endeavours and challenges that lie ahead of him, we are delighted to welcome Brian Keene QC as the new President of ADLS.

Brian Keene QC has a history of involvement with ADLS and joined the Council in 2011. He was elected Vice President in 2013.

Mr Keene QC has been a litigation and commercial advisory lawyer for some 45 years having been admitted in 1968. He went to the independent Bar in 1993 and became a Queen’s Counsel in 2006. He is a fellow of both the London and New Zealand Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute and a Panel Member of the latter.

Mr Keene QC has been intimately involved in the substantial changes of the ADLS over the last three years. He strongly believes in its role as an organisation that will add to the law and legal institutions by the work of its volunteer members. He says:

“ADLS is an organisation of like-minded lawyers and people with an interest in legal affairs and civic processes. It is incredibly well resourced in terms of its various committees and is independent of government as it receives no state funding. It is therefore a truly independent voice of the law.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to lead this fine organisation with such history and impressive list of past presidents. I am impressed by the grass roots work of our various standing committees and the management of our organisation headed by an exceptional CEO Sue Keppel.

“We are blessed with an active, experienced and united council which is both representative of our profession and strengthened by the appointed councillors John Hagen, Vikki Brannagan and John Brandts-Giesen.

“I am sure that this mix of people and resources will make a difference to the lives of lawyers and their public, and cement the importance of ADLS in the national institutions of the law.

“I am grateful to be able to serve ADLS. I take this opportunity to thank those who have personally encouraged me to take up this perhaps taxing role and subsequently congratulated me on my appointment.”

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