Brigadier Jennifer Woodward (BA '79) was awarded the CSC Conspicuous Service Cross in the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours list for her service as a military judge, judge advocate and Defence Force magistrate.
Brigadier Woodward was born in Newcastle, New South Wales where she completed her primary and secondary education. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the Australian National University and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sydney. She was admitted to practice in July 1980.
From 1980 to 1985, prior to being commissioned into the Australian Regular Army, Brigadier Woodward practiced in both Newcastle and Sydney in the areas of criminal law, family law and commercial litigation.
In 1985 she was appointed as a Legal Officer in the Australian Regular Army. During 1990 and 1991 she acted as the junior counsel to the Defence Force Advocate, appearing on many occasions before the Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal in ADF pay and allowance cases.
In 1991, Brigadier Woodward transferred to the Army Reserve. In her civilian capacity she became a Senior Prosecutor in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for the ACT (DPP), a position she held until 2004. During that period she continued to serve in the Army Reserve, working primarily in the discipline area of military law and playing a significant role in the harmonisation of the Criminal Code Act 2005 with the Defence Force Discipline Act 1982.
From 2004 until early 2007 Brigadier Woodward worked as a member of the Commonwealth Public Service in the substantive position of Director of Advisings, General Counsel Branch in the Defence Legal Division of the Department of Defence. She was responsible for all indemnity and insurance advice, commercial and contractual advice, privacy law, occupational health and safety, general administrative law, intellectual property and attended to other general advisings work for the Department. In the four months prior to her appointment to the former Australian Military Court she was the acting Assistant Secretary Legal Services in the Defence Legal Division.
Brigadier Jennifer Woodward CSC was appointed as the Director of Military Prosecutions by the Minister for Defence on 1 July 2015.
Until 30 June 2015 she was one of two permanent judge advocates and Defence Force magistrates serving in the Australian Defence Force. She had been appointed as one of the three inaugural military judges on the Australian Military Court in October 2007, however on 26 August 2009, in Lane v Morrison (2009) 239 CLR 230, the High Court declared that the Australian Military Court was not validly created. In September 2009, in response to the Court's decision , the Commonwealth Parliament enacted the Military Justice (Interim Measures) Act (No 1) 2009 to restore the system of trial by court martial or Defence Force Magistrate which had been in existence prior to the purported establishment of the Australian Military Court.
She has a partner, Brian, and an adult daughter.