Local Leaders – The team behind Bradley Allen Love, real people at work with the law

The BAL leadership team. Back Row, left to right Mark Love, Alan Bradbury, John Bradley, Katie Innes and David Toole. Front row, left to right John Wilson, Gabrielle Sullivan, Ian Meagher and Keith Bradley.

The BAL leadership team. Back Row, left to right: Mark Love, Alan Bradbury, John Bradley, Katie Innes and David Toole.
Front row, left to right: John Wilson, Gabrielle Sullivan, Ian Meagher and Keith Bradley. Photo: Supplied.

In an increasingly litigious world, talk of lawyers or the threat of engaging lawyers often sends a shiver up people’s spine.

And you have no doubt heard a few lawyer jokes in your time.

As is the case with most stereotypes, once you have a connection to a real person, any perception you had of them before is often challenged.

Bradley Allen Love (BAL) is a law firm based in the heart of Canberra, their people will challenge whatever perception you have of the law profession.

BAL has an outstanding reputation in its core practice areas of commercial and business law, co-operatives, real estate law, local government law, planning and environmental law, employment law, estate planning and business succession, and commercial litigation.

Each of these core practice areas has a specialised team behind it, teams of real people.

Alan Bradbury, Legal Director, Planning and Environmental Law & Administrative Law and NSW Accredited Specialist in Planning and Local Government Law

“I have worked in planning and environmental law my entire career. I moved to Canberra in 1991 with the aim of building up a practice acting for local councils and on behalf of local communities and developers.

I had my first council client soon after arriving, the former Yarrowlumla Shire Council, now Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council, for whom I still act some 25 years later.

One (of many) career highlights comes from my work with a developer in regional NSW.

This developer was proposing a large seniors living development. The DA had been initially refused by the local council and the developer had sought advice from a prominent Sydney lawyer who had told him he was wasting his time.

He sought a second opinion from me. I was able to identify a path to approval, the Council endorsed the development and I had a very happy client. Very satisfying.”

John Bradley – Director, Real Estate

“I’ve had the pleasure of acting for many of Australia’s leading companies over the last 40 years, including acting exclusively for a number of shopping centres with regard to leasing and sales matters.

These are big endeavours that have been terrifically rewarding to be a part of, both in terms of the rewards that flow to my client and the learning and relationships I get to be a part of.

My property sales and leasing experience extends to commercial, rural, industrial and retail sites across NSW and ACT and I welcome your inquiry and the chance to build a relationship with you.”

Keith Bradley AM – Director, Estate Planning

“2018 is my 40th year practising as a lawyer.

I am here to help with wills, Powers of Attorney, probate and estate administration, estate planning and business succession

An ability to empathise and identify with a clients’ particular needs sets my team at BAL apart.

A highlight of my career to date was being appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in 1998, a humbling experience but one that reminds me of the role we play in the community and the support we can offer families.

Art is my other great passion, I’ve been collecting for about 15 years, and I own works across a broad spectrum of medium – photography, glass, woodwork, painting, and sculpture. I find it very enjoyable.”

Katie Innes, Director, Business Law and NSW Accredited Specialist in Business Law

“I started practising law in 2007 with Williams Love & Nicol Lawyers, a predecessor of Bradley Allen Love. I’ve had the benefit of working with my colleagues across different specialties which has broadened my knowledge, but in the end I have always wanted to help businesses with the issues they face.

After 6 years obtaining a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Law, and my Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice, I never wanted to see a lecture theatre again, but I’ve realised you never stop learning. I’ve gone back to study twice now and completed a Diploma of Management and achieved a NSW Specialist Accreditation in Business Law.

For the past six years, I have been helping others learn as a commercial law mentor with the ANU’s School of Legal Practice, these new emerging lawyers are talented, it’s exciting to see.

Our lawyers are approachable and easy to talk to. We are people first, for example, my fiancé and I brew our own apple and pear cider, very rewarding on a hot summers day! I play board games with friends and I also love to read, and I’m a member of two book clubs.

In the end, I have a job to do providing advice on anything and everything to do with owning and operating a business at whatever stage it’s at.”

Mark Love – Legal Director and NSW Accredited Specialist in Business Law

“My legal career began in the mid 80’s, which was a time of considerable political and commercial change. The headwinds of a world recession created an appetite for economic and political reform.

The machinery for that change was heady stuff, and for a young lawyer like myself was a thrilling challenge and satisfying to be a part of and witness.

That spirit of reform and questioning the status quo remains, we are presently involved in reviewing the supply chain in the supermarket industry, as well as electoral reform, as well as various shareholder and director issues, sales of business, insolvency management, and IT supply.

Yes, we participate at the highest level in some of the nation’s most important issues and some of the region’s biggest commercial deals, but we deal with the same verve for every client – big and small.

When I am not at work, we might cross paths on my daily ride to work, or mountain biking on the weekend. Five children mean there’s always something going on.”

Ian Meagher, Director, Litigation & Employment

“My key focus areas include the defense of public liability and workplace claims, as well as advising on business and property disputes – particularly in the worlds of leasing and building development.

The breadth of our litigation team as a whole though enables me to spread my wings into a range of other issues – employment, estates, property, planning, and business.

This is work I love.

If you have ever seen the movie Philadelphia, there is a great scene where Tom Hanks is asked what he loves about the law. His answer rings true for me, “It’s that every now and again – not often, but occasionally – you get to be a part of justice being done. That really is quite a thrill when that happens.””

Gabrielle Sullivan – Director, Litigation and Employment

“I have been a civil lawyer for much of the past 20 years. I started off as a solicitor working in community legal centres in Sydney in consumer protection. This work was fast and fun. It taught me how to be efficient, and to deal with all kinds of people.

Prior to working as a solicitor, I had a strong academic interest in industrial relations and worked in IR for a university research centre, a trade union, and a legal publisher.

I love this kind of work and have returned to it in the past decade as an employment and industrial lawyer with BAL.

Employment law is all about people, which is central to my passion for this field. People bring all sorts of qualities and quirks, this work is never dull.

I practised in Sydney for nearly a decade. Canberra is different, this city allows you to know the key players, which in dispute resolution really helps resolve matters more easily and with less angst.”

David Toole – Legal Director and NSW Accredited Specialist in Property

“I started my legal practise in Sydney, working for a number of national firms before venturing back to my hometown of Albury, but Canberra has been home since 1993.

Estate planning, wills, Powers of Attorney, and superannuation are my specialty areas. I enjoy spending time understanding the client’s position and their needs and with thorough knowledge of the relevant law, work towards achieving the best outcomes for the client.

Practising law in Canberra is more civilised than it seems in other major cities. The Canberra legal community is a close-knit and friendly group, which serves the profession and wider community well.

My plans for the future are clear and straightforward; to continue doing the work I enjoy and assisting our clients.”

John Wilson – Managing Legal Director, Employment and Industrial Law and NSW Accredited Specialist in Employment and Industrial Law.

“I’ve been practising exclusively in employment and industrial law in Canberra for 25 years.

I’ve been a principal in this firm since its inception.

So, I know what’s what, where to find the answer, and what to do and not to do, in going about getting the best outcome for our clients.

I am keen to share my long history in employment law, Industrial Relations, and Workplace Health & Safety beyond BAL in the future with the development of a podcast about issues facing the HR industry. Stay tuned!”

The invitation is there to meet and speak with Ian, Katie, Alan, John W, John B, Keith, David, Mark, Gabrielle, and their teams at BAL Lawyers.

Get to know them and get to know how they can help you.

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