Catherine O’Connell

Catherine O’Connell is President of WILJ and Principal Founder and CEO of her own boutique, secondment-based flexible NewLaw firm, Catherine O’Connell Law. She is the first foreign female to set up her own law practice in Tokyo and winner of the British Chamber British Business Awards, Entrepreneur of the Year category in 2020. Catherine has been in Japan 18 years working primarily in In House roles at Panasonic, Olympus and Mitsubishi Motors as well as a Senior Associate at Hogan Lovells Law Firm in the Tokyo and London offices and 10+ years in New Zealand in private practice. Catherine is passionate about giving back to the community and serves as the Vice-Chair of the Australian & New Zealand Chamber of Commerce of Japan and Chair of the Legal Services & IP Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan. Catherine also mentors law students and lawyers, speaks on panels and to students embarking on law careers. She believes healthy lawyers make happy lawyers and is focused on lawyer wellness and flexible working. Catherine has double degree in Japanese and Law, and is a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand (1995) and England & Wales (2009). She is a Foreign Registered Lawyer in Japan the Tokyo Dai-Ichi Bar Association and she is the Host of the “Lawyer on Air” Podcast. More about Catherine at: