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This award recognises the breadth of talent amongst members within their first five years of practice. This individual displays great promise in their chosen field as well as a commitment to supporting their peers.

2002 Winner: Melissa Arndell, Associate, Bourke Legal

Melissa Arndell has been awarded for her talent and commitment to supporting her peers within the first five years of practice.

After moving to regional NSW in 2013, Arndell worked as a paralegal at a boutique personal injury firm in Orange while completing her legal studies. She was admitted as a solicitor to the Supreme Court of NSW in 2020 and now works as an associate at Bourke Legal.

Arndell’s expertise in and passion for personal injury law have led her to represent clients injured at work, in motor vehicle accidents and on public premises. She gained significant experience advocating for clients in both the Personal Injury Commission and the District Court of NSW.

“I enjoy listening to a client’s story and hearing about who they were before their injury and who they are now,” said Arndell.

“With a full picture in my mind, I can then assist them to navigate this difficult chapter in their lives with calmness and compassion.

“I always want my clients to feel that someone is on their side.”

Arndell actively raises awareness and advocates for those experiencing physical and psychological injuries in the workplace. She empathises with her clients and colleagues to help them overcome challenges.

The Law Society of New South Wales, President and Council congratulate Melissa Arndell on this achievement.


  • Elle Belekas, Lawyer, MinterEllison
  • Shantell Lee Bailey, Acting Senior Solicitor, Legal Aid NSW
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