Bernard Teague, AO, was a trailblazer. The first Victorian solicitor to be appointed a Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria, Justice Teague proved all the nay-sayers wrong. He was a judge for more than 20 years presiding over more than 90 murder trials.
To honour that achievement his fellow judge, Justice Emilios Kyrou approached the Law Institute of Victoria to organise a portrait to be painted and hung at the LIV’s Bourke St offices. Something which is commonplace in the courts of judges, but not for solicitors.
And to record that event, Miro Films was commissioned to produce a 15 minute documentary: A Portrait of Bernie. The documentary follows the path from the initial approach through to the selection of the Archibald Prize winning artist Lewis Miller, the sessions and the final meeting with Bernie at the conclusion of the sixth sitting. The documentary includes appearances by the LIV’s President Katie Miller and CEO Nerida Wallace, Judge Kyrou and former Victorian Premier John Brumby.
Bernie Teague’s career.
Bernie was for many years chief litigation solicitor for the Melbourne law firm, Corrs, and a former President of the Law Institute of Victoria and was created an Officer of the Order of Australia in the Australia DayHonours, 2009.
The Victorian Government of Premier Brumby appointed Justice Teague to head the Royal Commission on the Black Saturday bushfires on 13 February 2009.
In 2013 he was appointed to head an inquiry into fires in the Hazelwood Power Station in February of that year. Public hearings into the fire began on 26 May, 2013.
Bernie Teague is now in his late 70’s and remains actively engaged with a number of issues and continues his long held practice of travelling by public transport almost exclusively.