Five minutes with Sarah Dewar

03 March 2016 Topics: Tax and revenue, Tax disputes, Banking and financial services, Insolvency and restructuring, Litigation and dispute resolution

Sarah Dewar, associate in our commercial team, has worked with Cooper Grace Ward for five years. We asked her to tell us in her own words what life at Cooper Grace Ward is like, and a few of her past experiences and favourite things.

1. What made you decide to become a lawyer?

To be honest, I can’t remember – I have always wanted to be a lawyer. The earliest memory I have of wanting to be a lawyer is from primary school when a friend of mine was involved in a Family Court matter. After that I realised that I loved a good argument, so I tried debating in high school and the rest, you could say, is history.


2. How long have you worked at Cooper Grace Ward for and what brought you to that position?

I started at CGW as a graduate in February 2011 and I have just had my five year anniversary – how time flies!
When I was offered a graduate position after Uni, I took it and ran. Since then, a combination of inspiring people to learn from, high quality clients and ever challenging work has kept me moving along – having a win against the ATO also helped.


3. You’re from Brisbane – where’s the best place to go for a drink or dinner after work?

I’m a huge fan of Public for a quiet wine on a Friday afternoon.
I recently went to 1889 Enoteca at Woolloongabba for dinner and it was divine! I cannot recommend it highly enough – make sure you get the gnocchi.


4. If you could invite three people for dinner, dead or alive who would they be and why?

I can’t cook well enough to justify hosting a dinner party, so the first person coming to dinner is the head chef from 1889 Enoteca … with the gnocchi.

Leonardo di Caprio – so I can ask him whether he honestly believes that he deserved the Oscar for his role in The Revenant.

Hamish and Andy (surely they only count as one person).


5. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

There’s no such thing as a silly question, only silly answers.


6. Do you have any hobbies or interests outside of work?

In my spare time, I love reading anything that isn’t a judgment or piece of legislation, playing golf (although I’m pretty terrible) and travelling.


7. Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t a lawyer, I would be…

Probably unemployed.


8. What do you think will be single biggest issue facing the legal space in Australia in 2016?

Balancing clients’ expectations and the costs of running a business.


9. What do you love about your job?

Learning about clients’ businesses and working with them to achieve great outcomes.


10. Something you might not know about me is that …

I haven’t always been a tax disputes lawyer…I started my career in the litigation and dispute resolution group before realising that I could put my litigation and insolvency experience to good use by keeping the ATO in check (or so I would like to think).



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