Interview with Roshan Kumaragamage and Rebecca Barbour

Whilst it's always nice to hear about life after Minters, we love hearing from people who have decided to return – a trend we're seeing across the firm and one that is a wonderful reflection on MinterEllison and its culture. We caught up with recent return recruits, Rebecca Barbour and Roshan Kumaragamage.

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Rebecca Barbour

Senior Associate

1. When did you work at MinterEllison and what was your role?

I worked at Minters for 10 years from 2005 to 2015. I started my career at MinterEllison as a float secretary before being offered a permanent spot as a Legal Assistant in the Property team (I had previous property experience). I commenced my LLB seven months later and, during the course of my studies, moved into a paralegal role.

I applied to do the Summer Clerkship in my penultimate year of university and rotated through Insurance and Corporate Disputes, Private Equity, and Capital Markets and Tax. I finished out my final year of university whilst in the Property team, was admitted, and then started at MinterEllison as a Graduate. During this time, I rotated through Insurance & Corporate Risk and then Tax, where I eventually decided I wanted to settle. I've had a great introduction to the many aspects of a law firm as a result of my career at Minters.

2. What were some significant matters you worked on during that time?

I feel the breadth of experience I obtained at Minters is more memorable than the specific transactions I worked on. My Property background provided great context to my role as a Tax lawyer, and a stint in litigation always provides great insight into what can happen if things go wrong.

3. Where did you work after leaving MinterEllison and what was your role?

I worked at Herbert Smith Freehills as a solicitor in the Stamp Duty team.

4. What brought you back to MinterEllison?

The opportunity to grow as a lawyer within a team and structure I loved working in, within a firm that I consider to be moving in a great direction, and whose focus I feel more aligned with, were major factors in my decision to return to MinterEllison. I have been really humbled by the warm welcome I’ve received within the Minters network since I came back. It has really felt like a homecoming and, because Minters is a progressive firm that continually strives to be better, my return has definitely felt like a step forward in my career and by no means a step back.

5. What are some of the unique qualities about MinterEllison that kept you engaged as an alumni?

For me, it was much more personal than receiving alumni emails in my inbox; I was simply maintaining genuine relationships with people I genuinely liked working, and spending time, with.

6. Was there someone at MinterEllison that shaped your career as a lawyer?

A lot of people have had an impact on my career along the way, but two people in particular have shaped my career as a lawyer: Adrian Liaw encouraged me to study law when I was working for him in Property; and Nathan Deveson was a great mentor in my transition into a legal role, was my Supervising Partner when I settled in Tax, encouraged me to start my Master’s Degree (which I’ve recently finished), and was instrumental in my recent return to Minters. Both have had a significant influence on my career to date.

7. What advice would you give a fellow alumni who might have recently left the firm?

I really valued the relationships I had with my Minters friends and colleagues, and knew that I wanted to maintain them after I left. I wasn’t saying ‘goodbye’ – just ‘see you in a different capacity’. For me, those relationships were a major factor in my return to Minters. For others, great internal working relationships can equally translate into great external working relationships – whether their interactions with their former Minters colleagues are on the other side of a matter, in a client capacity, or in chambers. We're all likely to cross paths again at some point along the way, so I really see value in staying connected.

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Roshan Kumaragamage

Legal Technology Manager

1. When did you work at MinterEllison and what was your role?

I worked for MinterEllison between 2011 and 2016 as a Project Services Consultant in Sydney.

2. Where did you work after leaving MinterEllison and what was your role?

I was the Consulting Lead for Law in Order in Sydney, and then the Legal Technology Manager for Corrs Chambers Westgarth in Melbourne.

3. What brought you back to MinterEllison?

I returned to MinterEllison in November 2017 as Legal Technology Manager. What brought me back? I would have to say it was the camaraderie within Project Services. Few Consulting teams in our industry work as well together as the Project Services team here at MinterEllison, and I decided that I wanted to be part of that again.

4. What are some of the unique qualities about MinterEllison that kept you engaged as an alumni?

Besides staying close to the Project Services team during my time away from the firm, MinterEllison’s connection with the broader legal profession, through training and CLE sessions, networking events and publications have kept me engaged with the firm. It opened the door to broader conversations about my experience with the firm, and I felt that MinterEllison’s strong brand rubbed off a little on me as an alumni.

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