Alumnus is making her mark in CQ's legal fraternity

06 May 2021

An alumnus from CQUniversity's first-ever Bachelor of Law cohort is making her mark in the legal sector by launching her own practice in Central Queensland.

Criminal lawyer and mother of five Samantha Legrady recently opened the doors on Legrady Law in Rockhampton' a firm specalising in criminal and traffic law.

After spending the past five years in the fast-paced world of criminal law' Ms Legrady said her new venture was yet another career dream she could tick off her bucket list.

She hoped by running her own firm she could enjoy a better work-life balance into the future.

"I am very passionate about my children' family and my job' and love being a criminal lawyer. I decided that starting my own firm would mean I could have a better work-life balance so that I could do both well'" she explained.

Becoming a lawyer was a childhood dream of Ms Legrady's but it took until later in life for that dream to become a reality.

"My dream was always to study law' however' I was fortunate to work from home while raising my children' and then when the online degree at CQU became available at the end of 2010' I thought 'why not apply'.

"And sure enough in the January of 2011 I was accepted. Over the next three years' I studied hard' raised my beautiful five children and graduated as the first intake of the degree and gave the student speech at graduation – a moment in my life that I will cherish and never forget."

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Inspired by her grandfather who was a Doctor of Criminal Law in Hungary' Ms Legrady believes her passion for the law has always been evident.

"I wanted to advocate for those who didn't have a voice or needed someone to speak for them and help and defend them.

"I absolutely love advocacy. As a kid apparently mum and dad couldn't keep me quiet - haha.

"I also find representing people in their most difficult or darkest time so important. Of course' it doesn't mean I agree with what they have done' but I do believe everyone has the human right to be represented and provided with good legal advice.

"Providing good' sound and realistic advice is so much appreciated' even when someone is looking at a lengthy term of imprisonment."

With a mentor in Justice Michael Kirby during her study and afterwards' Ms Legrady has been afforded sound counsel throughout her career to date.

"I have been very fortunate to have had great employers' friends at the Bar and other colleagues. Rockhampton is very collegial in our legal community."

Ms Legrady has also had the privilege of handing on her love of the law to her daughter Joanna who recently was admitted to the Bar.

"My third eldest was admitted in the Supreme Court in Brisbane on the 12 April this year.

"The Honourable Chief Justice Catherine Holmes also mentioned at the admission that it was special for a mother to move her daughter's admission' something that wouldn't have happened 20 years ago. It was very special and I was very honoured."

Declaring her graduation day as one of the best days of her life' Ms Legrady says she was thankful to have been supported by CQU over the years.

"To be part of a University that encourages all to study' no matter age' gender or ethnicity' makes me proud.

"I hope that my journey can encourage others – women' mums and mature age students – to show that they can do anything they desire."