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Wightons News

A proud history of legal service – Women in business

One of the oldest and most trusted law firms in Geelong, Wightons Lawyers have a proud history of providing legal services in the area for over 130 years. It’s a history that lawyers Emily Ranner and Jacinta Learey are excited to be a part of.

“Many of our clients have been with Wightons for generations, and you get to know families really well” Emily explains. “Being able to guide them through different phases of their lives is really fulfilling.”

A commitment to their clients and the community are key aspects of the Wightons approach.

Although their roles are challenging, both lawyers find fulfilment in being able to help their clients through difficult situations.

Jacinta is a senior lawyer in the family law team, having worked exclusively in this area since 2016.

“Separation is a difficult and emotional time, and you are dealing with a number of changes in a short space of time,” Jacinta explains. “I feel privileged to be able to help my clients navigate this and hopefully take away some of the stress and uncertainty they are experiencing.”

Emily, a wills & estates and commercial lawyer, reflects that “to be able to help clients, whether it’s preparing a will or assisting with a family estate or dealing with a property transfer, is really rewarding. My approach is to make things as easy as possible for our clients”.

“Many of our clients come to us for a family member’s estate, and are already carrying a lot of stress and grief from that, so anything that I can do to ease the burden on them and make the process as easy as possible is a priority for me.”

Emily started her journey at Wightons as a paralegal and chose to continue her career as a qualified practitioner due to the supportive culture of the firm.

“One of the things I love about working at Wightons is the environment,” Emily explains. “It doesn’t matter how senior someone is, they will always make the time to provide guidance and the doors of our leaders are always open.”

Wightons Lawyers are committed to identifying and supporting their emerging female leaders, providing mentoring, leadership courses and professional development to foster their growth.

“Having a mentor as a young female lawyer is important, and that shared knowledge is invaluable” says Jacinta, who is grateful for the mentorship provided by Directors Justine Finlay and Sue Fridey. “Sue and Justine have been working at Wightons for over 25 years each and they are fantastic leaders in the firm and the community. It’s inspiring to have them as examples of what success for women can look like in the law.”

Jacinta and Emily are also enjoying the opportunity to mentor the next generation of lawyers at Wightons, as the team continues to grow and Wightons Lawyers maintain their commitment to ensuring “We’ll be there”.

As seen in the Geelong Times Women in Business feature (March 2024)


Wightons Lawyers

About Wightons Lawyers

Wightons Lawyers is one of the longest serving legal practices in Geelong, established in the 1890’s when James Wighton first started practising law in the area.