Not many lawyers can claim the title of being an extraordinary one. Whether it is because of their excellence in terms of their practice or their distinct individuality, an extraordinary lawyer can be hard to find. James Gardner Hopkins is one remarkable lawyer not only because of his long career in law, but also in his principles and practice. Want to know more about this exceptional legal professional? Read on.

James Gardner Hopkins Throughout the Years

James’ career started back way back in 1999 even before he graduated from the University of Auckland. During the summer of 1999, he served as a clerk at Russel McVeagh, one of New Zealand’s leading law firms. From there he began to move up, one step at a time. A year later, he returned to the firm to serve as a casual clerk. It seems that James was thriving in Russel McVeagh as he came back after a year once he graduated from the University of Auckland, this time, in a full-time position.

His stay with the law firm is a fruitful one. In just a few tears, he moved up to being a Senior Solicitor, then became a Senior Associate in 2007. Finally, he became the firm’s first Partner who is an ethnic minority.

In 2016, he left Russel McVeagh to venture on his own. Since his departure, he has been working on the independent bar. He has also established his own firm, JGH Barrister.

His Environmental Practice

Perhaps his notable law practice is made more significant by his focus on the environment. Specialising in environmental law, James given the task of leading Russel McVeagh’s Environment, Planning, and Natural Resources Team. Aside from his leadership at his former firm, he has represented and worked with various environment-related cases. One of the most noteworthy cases is his work on seabed mining near the Taranaki coast.

Other than this case, he also worked on the MV Rena conflict, the NZ King Salmon, Frankton Flats and the Supermarket Wars.

His Cultural Advocacy

Because of his Pacific Islander roots, James also headed his former law firm’s Maori Group. During his stint as the group’s leader, he spearheaded the legal workstream for Ngati Hinerangi. In this case, he helped the people move from the Agreement in Principle to a Deed of Settlement with the Crown.

Other cultural cases he handled include protecting cultural sites and waahi tapu.

A Touch of Uniqueness

His extraordinary practice also led him to do pro bono work for Helping You Help Animals (HUHA). Additionally, he was awarded as one of Wellington’s best-dressed individuals with his chic fashion choices and one-of-a-kind style.

From his beginnings as a legal practitioner to the miscellaneous awards he received, it is clear that James Gardner Hopkins is not your ordinary lawyer. With his work in the environmental and cultural field, you can certainly expect to hear more from him and his worthwhile works that matter not only in the legal sector but to the affected groups, as well.