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Senior Qld judge to step down in 2017

AAP logoAAP 31/10/2016 Sarah Motherwell

The first woman to head an appeals court in Australia and one of Queensland's most senior judges is stepping down next year, after 25 years on the job.

Justice Margaret McMurdo announced late Monday she would be resigning in March 2017, ending a landmark career in law.

Justice McMurdo was the first woman appointed to the bench of the state's District Court in 1991 and has been president of the Queensland Court of Appeal for 18 years.

Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath said the tenor of Justice McMurdo's term stood as testament to her legal acumen and leadership over a significant period.

"She has brought dignity, leadership and intellectual rigour to this vital role, and rightly has the respect of the legal profession and the judiciary - across this state and beyond," Ms D'Ath said.

Justice McMurdo's public feud with Chief Justice Tim Carmody partly led to his resignation in 2015, less than a year after he was appointed by the former Liberal National Party government.

She refused to sit with him on any court after criticising him for his contact with child protection campaigner Hetty Johnston during an appeal by Daniel Morcombe's convicted killer.

Justice McMurdo, 62, is a Companion of the Order of Australia and was awarded a Centenary Medal in 2003.

She is also a founding member of the Women Lawyers Association and married to fellow Court of Appeal Justice Philip McMurdo.

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