Emalene Gemmell

Principal Solicitor | Notary Public

Emalene is a dedicated lawyer and passionate client advocate, committed to utilising alternative dispute resolution practises, where appropriate, for her clients.

Emalene achieved a Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Law with 1st Class Honours from the University of New England. Her postgraduate study includes: Masters in Private International Law (Family), University of Aberdeen, United Kingdom; Notarial Practice Accreditation with the Society of Notaries of NSW in conjunction with the College of Law, Sydney; Vocational Graduate Diploma in Alternative Dispute Resolution, Community Training Australia, Queensland; National Mediation Assessment with the College of Law Sydney; and a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice, College of Law, Sydney.

Emalene is a Notary Public; an Accredited Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner; a Nationally Accredited Mediator; an Independent Children’s Lawyer; a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner in private practice for the Legal Aid Commission of NSW; and is also a solicitor representing clients in Legally Assisted Meditations with Centacare, New England North West.

In addition, Emalene is a casual lecturer and marker with the University of New England, Armidale. She also enjoys her role as committee member of WiNG – The Women’s Networking Group with the Armidale Business Chamber.

Emalene started the practice in 2015 because she wanted to provide clients with a distinct approach to family law. She believes that people need a flexible mix of good advice, strong representation and an understanding of the emotion involved.

Hayley Gritching

B Agr/LLB UNE/ Dip Leg Prac.

In selecting a career pathway that would satisfy her love of learning, Hayley chose to combine her keen interests in agriculture and law. Living in rural New England, Hayley experiences first-hand what agriculture does for a community and appreciates how law filters into all facets of life and is constantly evolving.

Completing a Bachelor of Agriculture and Law in 2018, Hayley joined our team as a Graduate-at-Law. She has recently successfully completed a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice with the College of Law, Sydney. Hayley was admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of NSW in early February 2020.

Hayley believes the valuable work ethics and skills instilled through her employment with the National Australia Bank in both Glen Innes and Tenterfield are readily transferable to the legal profession.

Hayley is also an accomplished classical musician, performing with the NSW State Schools Wind Ensemble in Chicago in 2004, and in 2008 with the Beijing Olympics Music Ensemble in Beijing. As an active member of her local community, Hayley was also a judge for the 2018 Glen Innes Lions Youth of the Year Program.

Christine Sullivan

RN; BAppSc QUT; Cert TEFL Cambridge; Grad Dip TESOL UoW.

Christine brings a range of professional capabilities and experience to the Emalene Gemmell Family Law office. Initially, as a Registered Nurse in Psychiatry, Christine worked at major hospitals in Brisbane for over 20 years. Her second career as an English Language teacher took her to South East Asia for 15 years. Currently, Christine’s third professional career has enabled her to synthesise her strengths in interpersonal communication, administration, problem solving and dispute management and apply these in her roles in supporting the solicitors she works with. In 2018, Christine completed The Law Society of NSW Wills and Probate Procedures Course for Support Staff. Christine works exclusively with Emalene, assisting with all aspects of her busy family law practice. Christine also manages our rural and residential conveyancing transactions, estate drafting and probate applications.

Christine has been commended by Leap Legal Software for her skills and dedication to her understanding of all aspects of what the software suite has to offer. Christine has also completed extensive training with PEXA (Property Exchange Australia) and completes all of our property transfers on-line via this platform.

Lucinta Heinrich

Office Assistant
DipComWelWbng (Pacific Focus) UNE

Lucinta is the friendly face who will greet you when you enter our office. Lucinta sees to the smooth running of our offices in a range of areas including diary management, maintaining client files, preparation of briefs for Counsel and assisting with client identification and applications for funding as well as invoicing and receipting.

Lucinta has held both managerial and secretarial roles with the Nauru Ministry of Health and the Nauru Education Department.

Lucinta has completed a Diploma of Community Welfare and Wellbeing (Pacific Focus) through the University of New England campus in Nauru. Through her studies, Lucinta has completed practical training within the Armidale community, including placements with local schools and observing professional health workers. Lucinta has experienced first-hand the complex education and personal issues facing children in the Armidale community.

Lucinta is presently completing a Certificate III in Business Administration (Legal) with TAFE NSW.

Jen Shephard

Mental Health Clinician | Consultant to Emalene Gemmell Family Law

Jen is a passionate early infancy mental health advocate, working in both the private and the not-for-profit sector. Jen holds professional membership with the Australian Association of Social Work and with Australian Association of Infant Mental Health. She is a Registered Cognitive and Behavioural Therapist with the NSW NDIS Commissioner, practicing in Armidale and Uralla, assisting families and carers with difficult behaviours as they present in their natural environment. Play is a theme throughout her practice. Jen’s primary focus is on designing programs that are child centred and focused to provide creative solutions to help assist families and children in their everyday lives.

As a consultant to Emalene Gemmell Family Law, Jen offers a point of referral for assisting our clients and their families with the often-challenging aspects of separation and childhood development.
Jen also has post graduate qualifications in Family Dispute Resolution and is a Child Inclusive Practitioner.

Emalene and Jen also offer collaborative family dispute resolution sessions either as co-family dispute resolution practitioners, or in family relationship break-downs where a mediator (Emalene) acts independent of a Child Inclusive Practitioner (Jen) who engages with the children (autonomous from their parents or carers) to ascertain each child’s thoughts, wishes and experiences so these may be brought to the round table for discussion and reflection by all the parties.