Dame Roma Flinders Mitchell,  was an Australian lawyer, judge and state governor. Mitchell was the first woman to hold a number of positions in Australia – she was the country's first woman judge, and the first woman to be a Queen's Counsel, a chancellor of an Australian university and the Governor of an Australian state.(2 October 1913 – 5 March 2000)
Dame Roma Mitchell
Mitchell in 1965
|31st Governor of South Australia|
6 February 1991 – 21 July 1996
|Premier||John Bannon (1991–1992)|
Lynn Arnold (1992–1993)
Dean Brown (1993–1996)
|Preceded by||Sir Donald Dunstan|
|Succeeded by||Sir Eric Neal|
|Judge of the Supreme Court of South Australia|
23 September 1965 – 1 October 1983
|Born||2 October 1913|
Adelaide, South Australia
|Died||5 March 2000 (aged 86)|
Adelaide, South Australia
|Education||St Aloysius College, Adelaide|
|Alma mater||University of Adelaide|
Early life and educationEdit
Roma Mitchell was born in Adelaide, South Australia, on 2 October 1913, the second daughter and youngest child of Harold and Maude Mitchell (née Wickham). She was an alumna of St Aloysius Convent College, Adelaide and the University of Adelaide.
Mitchell was admitted as a barrister in 1935. In 1962 she was appointed a Queen's Counsel. As well as a practicing barrister, Mitchell was a lecturer in Family law at the University of Adelaide and Margaret Nyland was one of her students, with Mitchell becoming a mentor to Nyland. Mitchell was made a Justice of the Supreme Court of South Australia in 1965. She was still the only female judge in South Australia when she retired 18 years later in 1983 although Justices Elizabeth Evatt and Mary Gaudron had been appointed to federal courts by the Whitlam Government. It was not until 1993 that the second woman was appointed to the court, Mitchell's former student Margaret Nyland.
On 26 January 1991, Mitchell was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC), Australia's highest civilian honour, for services to the law, to learning, and to the community. She was made a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) on 1 January 2000. Mitchell received her honour directly from The Queen of Australia in a private investiture.
- "Index Mf-Mn". Rulers. Retrieved 16 June 2013.
- Roe, Jill (Autumn 2008). "Review of Roma the First: A biography of Dame Roma Mitchell, by Susan Magarey and Kerrie Round" (PDF). Journal of Historical Biography. 4: 138–141.; M. Press, Some women in the Australian Church, Journal of the Australian Catholic Historical Society 30 (2009), 33–38.
- "Dame Roma Mitchell". AustralianBiography.gov.au. Retrieved 27 November 2017.
- "The Honourable Margaet Nyland AM". Australian Women Lawyers. Retrieved 27 November 2017.
- It's an Honour: CBE
- It's an Honour: DBE
- It's an Honour: AC
- It's an Honour: CVO
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Roma Mitchell.|
- South Australian history
- Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre
- ABC Behind The News dedication to Roma Mitchell
- Women & Politics in South Australia
- Biography of Roma Mitchell
- John Howard's dedication to Roma Mitchell
- Mitchell Chambers
- "Glimpses of a Glorious Life"
- Mitchell, Roma Flinders in The Encyclopedia of Women and Leadership in Twentieth-Century Australia
Lieutenant General Sir Donald Dunstan
| Governor of South Australia
Sir Eric Neal