Attorney General John Quigley has paid tribute to the former Chief Judge of the Family Court of Western Australia, Stephen Thackray who passed away unexpectedly this week aged 65.
Mr Thackray was highly regarded by the judiciary and the legal professions for his vast experience in the area of family law.
He graduated from The University of Western Australia with an honours degree in Law in 1977.
After completing articles he joined Paterson and Dowding where he became a partner in 1981, practicing principally in family law.
In 1992 Mr Thackray became one of the first accredited Family Law specialists in WA, achieving the highest marks in that intake.
He was president of the Family Law Practitioners Association from 1994 to 1995.
In 1997 he was appointed as Principal Registrar of the Family Court of WA and served as an acting judge with the court in 1999 and in 2003 before accepting a permanent appointment to the court in 2004.
Mr Thackray took up his position as Chief Judge of the Family Court of Western Australia in 2007 before retiring in January 2019.
As stated by Attorney General John Quigley:
“I am saddened to hear of the death of Stephen Thackray.
“He made an outstanding contribution to the Western Australian community in his 22 years of service as a judicial officer, for which we owe him a debt of gratitude.
“Stephen Thackray led the development of family law jurisprudence throughout Australia to an extent matched by very few in the history of the Family Court.
“He took on some of the most difficult cases ever to come before the court, and was universally respected for his open-mindedness, empathy and wisdom.
“I offer my condolences and those of the WA Government to his wife Janet and children.”