Louise Denton, one of our new Principals, has been embracing the Level 4 lockdown in her retro caravan, with some very cute wee visitors, and we all agree at the firm that she is setting the bar high for coolest home office! Here's a little more from Louise:
Who's in your bubble?
My amazing partner Kyle, 9-month-old son Lewis, stepdaughter Myia (she goes between two bubbles) and Neddy the Spoodle.
Where did you grow up?
Dunedin – the best city in New Zealand! I grew up with four brothers, all very close in age, so we were a bit of a gang.
What was your dream job as a child?
A doctor, I used to make my younger brothers sit on the couch while I directed them to eat flower petals as medicine.
Close to Dunedin (of course) but also a great mix between small community feel and international excitement. It is easy to jump on a plane to see my brothers in Auckland and vice versa.
I have a natural tendency to want to help people and ensure fairness prevails! With criminal defence work, in particular, your client comes up against the police or Crown and relatively complex justice system. They need someone in their corner, listening to them and advocating for them.
Biggest challenge you faced in 2019?
Having my first baby and returning to work. It's a nice challenge to have, though.
One word to describe you:
Why did you want to be a partner?
Wanting to be a partner was quite specific to Todd and Walker and the great team we have. I agreed with the direction that Graeme and Mike were taking the firm and felt my particular skill set and personality complemented theirs.
We have a very high ratio of female to male staff (20 female:6 male), and when the opportunity for Partnership came up, I decided to go for it. It is well known that females lawyers can fade away from Partnership, particularly around their 30s if starting a family. Timing-wise I was about to go on maternity leave! I thought if I don't take this opportunity, it might pass me by.
There were some personal considerations: Would it be too much stress? How can I juggle both being a parent and a partner? Will I miss out on some of Lewis's life? I drew a lot of confidence from the fact that Mike Walker is also a new dad, and Pete Sygrove has an 18-month-old. That commonality provided an understanding of the demands a parent has at work and a commitment to a genuinely flexible work environment.