Adam Hourigan’s portrait of Magistrate Kim Pogson that is now hanging in Ballina Court-house.
Adam Hourigan’s portrait of Magistrate Kim Pogson that is now hanging in Ballina Court-house.

Portrait a hanging tribute

A PHOTOGRAPHIC portrait of the late Clarence Valley magistrate Kim Pogson was unveiled at Ballina Courthouse this week, as a tribute to the highly respected judicial officer who died on November 4 last year.

The Chief Magistrate of NSW, Judge Graeme Henson, attended the ceremony to pay his respects to his friend and colleague.

“The portrait will preserve the legacy of Magistrate Pogson, who made a substantial contribution to the justice system, particularly on the Far North Coast where he spent the majority of his 16 years on the bench,” Judge Henson said.

“As a magistrate, he will be remembered for his fairness and efficiency and his willingness to help his colleagues, particularly those who were new to the bench.

“As a friend, I will remember Kim for his sense of humour, his love of life and his dedication to his family.”

The portrait photograph was taken of Mr Pogson sitting on the bench at Grafton Courthouse by Daily Examiner photographer Adam Hourigan.

“It is fitting that the portrait of Magistrate Pogson serving at the most southern point of his court circuit will be displayed at Ballina – the most northern point of his circuit. It is symbolic of the impact he made wherever he served,” Magistrate Jeff Linden said.

Attorney-General Greg Smith said the portrait's position was unique in NSW. “I have been to many courts in NSW during my time as Crown Prosecutor and more recently as a politician and I can't recall anywhere else that has a portrait of a magistrate in a courtroom,” Mr Smith said.

“It is a well-deserved tribute to Magistrate Pogson for his exemplary service to the bench and the community.”

Mr Pogson's widow, Sandra Pogson, and his two children attended the unveiling of the portrait, along with local magistrates, court staff and a representative of the legal profession, the NSW Police and the NSW Sheriff's office.

Mr Pogson was admitted as a solicitor in 1972. He practised primarily in the Manly-Warringah area on Sydney's northern beaches, where he became a partner in a law firm.

In 1985, he was appointed an arbitrator and subsequently heard more than 150 cases on a range of matters, including disputes over motor vehicle accidents, contracts and building matters.

The experience he gained as an arbitrator in settling matters and making determinations helped him prepare for the next stage of his career as a magistrate.

He was appointed to the bench of the Local Court in 1994 and worked on circuits in Bathurst and Lismore until 2001 when he returned to Sydney.

He was appointed to the Ballina Circuit in 2006, where he remained for the rest of his career. “Magistrate Pogson felt a great affinity for the Far North Coast where he made some enduring friendships and was able to regularly enjoy his favourite pastimes of swimming and golf,” Mr Linden said.

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