Gabrielle Canny

Legal Services Commission


Gabrielle Canny is a legal practitioner and manager who has worked in legal organisations for 25 years, combining senior management and policy roles in both private practice and government bodies.

She is currently employed as the Director and Chief Executive of the Legal Services Commission of South Australia and is responsible for the provision of legal advice, education and representation to the South Australian public. The Legal Services Commission runs the largest legal practice in South Australia, employing 120 legal practitioners.

Gabrielle started her legal career with the Office of Consumer and Business Affairs in South Australia and has worked as a legal practitioner for both private practice and legal aid organisations around Australia. She has extensive litigation experience. Working in Adelaide, Canberra, Sydney, Perth and Melbourne and then moving to China for 5 years, Gabrielle has applied flexibility and persistence to her legal career.

Gabrielle has worked with the most disenfranchised members of our community, constantly balancing the needs of clients within the constraints of government funding. Gabrielle’s passion is ensuring access to the law for all South Australians and facilitating such access through an accessible, efficient and effective legal aid system.

In 2001 (hat tip to Arthur C. Clarke?) the Legal Services Commission became the first legal aid Commission in Australia to provide a comprehensive plain-English digital guide to the law when it launched its Law Handbook Online.

It is again leading the way with the creation of Legal Chat. Gabrielle’s organisation is the first legal aid commission in Australia to introduce a website chat window allowing members of the public to engage in an online conversation, in real time, with a Commission lawyer.