The Honourable Chief Justice Catherine E Holmes

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Date of Birth

12 October 1956

Schooling

  • Oxley State High School, Oxley (1973)
  • Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College, Corinda (1971)

University Education

  • Master of Laws (Adv), University of Queensland (1998)
  • Bachelor of Arts (Hons), University of Queensland (1989)
  • Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice, Queensland Institute of Technology (1983)
  • Bachelor of Laws, University of Queensland (1980)
  • Bachelor of Economics, Australian National University (1977)

Judicial Career

  • Chief Justice of Queensland, Supreme Court of Queensland (2015-)
  • Acting Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Queensland (2015)
  • Judge, Queensland Court of Appeal (2006-)
  • Judge, Queensland Mental Health Court (2004-2006)
  • Judge, Supreme Court of Queensland (2000-2006)
  • Acting Judge, District Court of Queensland (1999)

Pre-judicial Career

  • Appointed Senior Counsel (1999)
  • Counsel Assisting the Forde Commission of Inquiry into Child Abuse (1998-1999)
  • Deputy President, Queensland Community Corrections Board (1997)
  • Part-time Member, Anti-Discrimination Tribunal (1994-2000)
  • Crown Prosecutor, Office of Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (1984-1986)
  • Foundation Member, Women's Legal Service Queensland (1984)
  • Admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland (1984)
  • Admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland (1982)

Biographical Notes

Catherine Ena Holmes was born on 12 October 1956 in Brisbane, Queensland, the daughter of Ernest Holmes, labourer, and his wife Ellen, (née Mackinlay), bookkeeper. She received her secondary education at Our Lady of Sacred Heart College, Corinda (1970-71), and Oxley State High School (1972-73). She then studied at the Australian National University, graduating Bachelor of Economics (1977) and at the University of Queensland, graduating Bachelor of Laws (1980). Holmes completed the Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice at the Queensland Institute of Technology and was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland (1982). She married Arthur Phillip Preston on 1 September 1976. They had two daughters and one son.

On 19 November 1984, Holmes was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland. She worked initially as a Commonwealth crown prosecutor (1984-86), and then commenced practice at the bar in Brisbane. She took silk on 15 December 1999. Holmes served as a founding member of the Women’s Legal Service (1984), a part-time member of the Anti-Discrimination Tribunal (1994–2000) and deputy president of the Queensland Community Corrections Board (1997). She obtained a Bachelor of Arts with honours (1989) and Master of Laws (Advanced) (1998) at the University of Queensland. She was counsel assisting the Forde Commission of Inquiry into Abuse of Children in Institutions (1998-99) and then served as an acting judge of the District Court of Queensland, from 12 August 1999 to 12 November 1999.

On 16 March 2000, Holmes was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland. She served as the Criminal List judge (2001–04) and the presiding judge of the Queensland Mental Health Court (2005-06). On 26 May 2006, she was appointed a judge of appeal. In 2011-12, she conducted the Commission of Inquiry into the 2010–11 Queensland floods.

Holmes was featured in 'A Woman's Place: 100 years of Queensland Women Lawyers', published by the Supreme Court Library Queensland in 2005.

Judicial Papers

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