BA (Fine Art) (UMonash)

Sam McNeil



Sam is in the final stages of her Master of Law (Juris Doctor) at Monash University, and has a keen interest in Intellectual Property Law and International Cultural Heritage Law. Sam also graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Art History and Theory from Monash University in 2017 with a focus in Indigenous Rock Art and Cultural Heritage from Monash Indigenous Centre. Her study of rock art led her to Kuku Ngyungal Country in Far North Queensland where she was privileged to learn from the Kuku Ngyungal and Kuku Yalanji community. Sam has also visited and studied international rock art sites in Western Europe.

Photo by Jamie James
Artwork: Bibi Barba, 'Terri - Butterfly Flowers Dreaming' (2020)


Sam is passionate about the intersection of art and law, and in 2019 was awarded a Monash University scholarship (Monash Industry Team Initiative Program) to research the limitations of Australian Intellectual Property Law for the protection of Indigenous Cultural Intellectual Property (ICIP). Specifically, her research focused on issues of passing off, misleading and deceptive conduct, moral rights and unconscionable dealing with Indigenous artists.

Through this project Sam worked for Indigenous business First Nations Blockchain, where she was Project Manager of an interdisciplinary team who created an operational blockchain platform implementing best practice for ICIP protection, based extensively on the work and publications of Terri Janke and Company.

Prior to joining TJC, Sam was a teaching associate with the Michael Kirby Centre for Public Health and Human Rights, where she taught undergraduate students and conducted research with Dr Liz Bishop and the Alfred Hospital on a human rights approach to medical treatment and emergency care. Sam has also worked as a paralegal for barristers Dimitri Ternovski and Nawaar Hassan.


Sam is passionate about social justice and has volunteered and worked for the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service and Waller Legal. Through her work in social justice Sam has received valuable mentorship in culturally sensitive legal practice for First Nations people. In her personal life, Sam enjoys painting, practicing yoga and barre, and spending as much time as possible near the ocean. She enjoys getting up early to watch the English Premier League and loves the Spurs.

© 2021 Terri Janke and Company



All professional photography by Jamie James at James Photographic Services.

The painting 'Terri - Butterfly Flowers Dreaming' by Bibi Barba has been used under license in the firm photographs, including for staff profiles.

The painting  'Ancient Tracks and Waterholes' (2019) by Rene Kulitja has been used under license in some firm photographs on the TJC website homepage, staff profiles, careers and services pages. Visit Maruku Arts for more work by Rene Kulitja.

The visual artwork ‘Freshwater Lagoon 1’ by Lisa Michl Ko-manggen has been used under license in some photographs and videos. Visit Cape York Art for more work by Ko-manggen.

The painting ‘My Country’ by Bibi Barba has been used under license in some photographs and Law Way videos. Visit Bibi's website.

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation

phone: +61 2 9693 2577


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