Family Law Committee Members


The Hon Lady Wise

Lady Wise was appointed Judge of the Supreme Courts in February 2013.

Further information about Lady Wise can be found here.



Lynda Brabender KC

Lynda has been a member of the Faculty of Advocates since 2005 and specialises in Family and Child Law and Public Law as it relates to children. Lynda is a member of the Faculty of Advocates Disciplinary Tribunals and was a member of the Faculty Council from 2010 to 2013. She is a member of the committee of the Advocates Family Law Association and the Faculty of Advocates representative on the Scottish Government working group on bar reporters. Lynda was a Convener of the Additional Support Needs Tribunal for Scotland from 2005 to 2010. She was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2017. Further information about Lynda can be found here.

Fiona Campbell

Fiona is a Director with Macleod & MacCallum in Inverness where she heads up the Family Law Team. She is accredited as a Specialist in Family Law and as a Family Mediator by the Law Society of Scotland. She is regularly appointed by the Sheriff to act as a Child Welfare Reporter and as Reporting Officer and Curatrix ad litum in respect of adoption and permanence proceedings. She is a member of the Family Law Association and Comprehensive Accredited Lawyer Mediators (CALM). She is a member of Consensus and chairs the Highland Collaborative POD meetings. She is also a FLAGS (Family Law Arbitration Group Scotland) Arbitrator.

Rachael Kelsey

Rachael is a solicitor in Edinburgh. She is accredited as a specialist in Family Law and as a Family Mediator by the Law Society of Scotland. She is Secretary to the International Academy of Family Lawyers; Chair and a Trustee of Family Mediation Lothian; Treasurer of CALM (Comprehensive Accredited Lawyer Mediators) and on the committee of the Scottish Branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Rachael is a FLAGS (Family Law Arbitration Group) Arbitrator and Trainer and regularly lectures nationally and internationally on Family Law matters. Further information on Rachael can be found here

Sheriff Principal Catherine (Kate) Dowdalls

Ms Dowdalls practised as a solicitor, becoming a partner in a Stirling firm in 1991, before being admitted to the Faculty of Advocates in 2000 and taking silk in 2013. A specialist in family law, she has also represented parties in fatal accident inquiries and has been a core participant in the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry. Since 2018 she has been a Scottish Law Commissioner, leading the Aspects of Family Law project. 

Simon Stockwell

Simon Stockwell is a career civil servant, who joined the then Scottish Office in 1985. He has held a variety of posts covering matters such as teachers’ salaries, building control, local government, social policy, beef exports and waste management. He is currently head of the Family Law team in the Justice Directorate.

Sheriff Fiona Tait

Sheriff Fiona Tait is a resident sheriff at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

Alison Reid

Alison was enrolled as a solicitor in 1996.  She worked in civil litigation in private practice for four years before being employed as a Report to the Children's Hearings.  Having recognised the need for a specialist, outreach, legal representation service for children and young people in Scotland, Alison co-founded Clan Childlaw in 2008 and continues to be employed as its Chief Executive and Principal Solicitor.  She is a court reporter and curator ad litem in relation to contact and residence disputes in the sheriff court and a curator ad litem and reporting officer in relation to adoption and permanence proceedings. Until recently she was also a safeguarder in the children's hearing system and has previously served as a member of the Law Society of Scotland's Access to Justice Committee and as a member of the City of Edinburgh Council's Child Protection Committee.

Marie-Louise Fox

Marie-Louise Fox joined SLAB as a solicitor in 2001. Prior to that, she worked in a mixed civil and criminal private practice and community law centres. She continues to be a registered practising solicitor. She is SLAB’s Director of Operations with responsibility for SLAB's legal aid applications and treasury operations covering the provision of civil, criminal and children’s legal assistance. This role includes the provision of advice to the Scottish Government on planned legislative changes across civil and criminal law. Marie-Louise is a member of SCJC Personal Injury Committee and was a member of the SCJC Working Group on FAIs. She is also a member on a wide range of Scottish Government and justice partner groups, including the current Recover, Renew & Transform programme.


The Council has nominated a number of observers to attend Council and committee meetings in order to assist in the carrying out of its functions.  In addition to Family Law Committee members, the following observers attend Committee meetings:

Rachel Grant, Senior Legislation Implementation Manager, Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service
Yvonne Anderson, Clerking Services Manager (Civil), Court of Session, Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service