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Latest appointments mark 150% growth for Tompkins Wake's Auckland team

Latest appointments mark 150% growth for Tompkins Wake's Auckland team

Latest appointments mark 150% growth for Tompkins Wake's Auckland team

Tuesday 12 May, 2020

(From left to right: Isabella Stevenson, Annie Tavalea, Zandra Wackenier, Tabs Rauf and Bernadette Carroll)

Tompkins Wake’s Auckland office has this month been bolstered by five new team members, including a new partner.

Partner Zandra Wackenier has joined Tompkins Wake along with two members of her team that previously worked with her at Wynyard Wood.

Zandra brings with her senior solicitor Isabella Stevenson and EA Bernadette Carroll. Senior solicitor Annie Tavalea has also joined Tompkins Wake. All four are now part of the firm’s disputes resolution family.

The latest appointments marks 150% growth in the size of the team at Tompkins Wake’s Auckland office over the past two years.

Zandra is an experienced family lawyer with more than 16 years in practise. Her expertise covers all aspects of family law including division of relationship and trust property, contracting out agreements, spousal maintenance, child support and international family law. Zandra also has a particular interest and speciality with reproductive law and is a contributing author for the Westlaw Family Law publication and a is a member of the NZ Law Society Family Law Section.

After being admitted to the Bar in 2017, Isabella provided litigation support to a senior family law practitioner in the Auckland CBD. She then went on to practise as a junior barrister in Auckland Legal Chambers, specialising in family law. She has worked on a range of matters involving relationship property disputes, domestic violence, care of children, spousal maintenance, and family trust matters.

“We are all delighted to be joining the Tompkins Wake family who have made us feel very welcome despite these strange and uncertain times,” Zandra Wackenier said.

“For me personally, I’m looking forward to being part of such a dynamic, progressive and compassionate partnership who not only support, but actively encourage, the overall wellness of its employees and a healthy work/life balance.”

Annie has previously worked as a solicitor at the Auckland Community Law Centre, assisting clients on a broad range of legal issues during stressful times in their lives. This work gave her a good grounding in the areas of employment, tenancy, administrative, criminal, and family law, the latter with a particular focus on care of children and family violence.

Bernadette brings more than 35 years as a legal PA. She has worked in both Australia and New Zealand, primarily in family law.

And Tabassum (Tabs) Rauf started recently as an energy law specialist in the firm’s corporate commercial team as an associate.

Having worked for New Zealand’s largest energy retailer, Tabs has extensive knowledge in the electricity, natural gas and LPG industry.

Tabs also has a firm understanding of the compliance and regulatory framework pertaining to the energy sector having significant exposure liaising with regularity bodies such as The Electricity Authority and The Gas Industry Company and as such has acted in an advisory capacity on numerous energy projects.

Tompkins Wake has continued to experience significant growth, even in the current economic climate.

“We know it’s a challenging time for many people right now and will continue to be for some time. We’re grateful that our strong team culture has seen our team rally together and get through this difficult time,” Calder said.

“Our focus for 2020 and beyond is to continue to invest in increasing and building our capability to meet the needs of our growing client base by attracting and retaining great people,” said Tompkins Wake CEO Jon Calder.

“We’ve grown rapidly over the past four years – more than 20 per cent, in fact – but we’ve been careful to maintain a complete focus on our culture and people, creating a great working environment and, importantly, a great life outside the firm.”