Shannon O’Hara


Shannon O’Hara is the Senior Legal Counsel to the Aviation Team at QBE Insurance Australia Pacific (QBE). In this role she partners with the aviation underwriting, industry development and aviation claims teams to efficiently assess and provide legal guidance on underwriting risk exposures, aviation litigation and claims strategies and general insurance law matters affecting the aviation business.  In addition, Shannon actively supports QBE’s Aviation’s industry development team to promote and develop aviation safety, industry growth and thought leadership and has been instrumental in the drafting and preparation of multiple submissions to the Federal Government on a range of proposed aviation industry changes and developments.  

Prior to joining QBE Insurance in February 2019, Shannon worked in private legal practice for 14 years specialising in Australian and international aviation law with a particular focus on aviation insurance and litigation. Shannon has managed commercial and litigated disputes across Australia, the United States of America, Papua New Guinea, the United Kingdom, Fiji, and the Pacific Islands with particular experience in managing major aviation losses and personal injury claims for aviation operators in Papua New Guinea.  

A constant industry contributor, Shannon is a Director, and current President, of the Aviation Law Association of Australia and New Zealand (ALAANZ), she sits on the Board of the Australian Helicopter Industry Association (AHIA) and is the National Corporate Membership Chair for Women in Aviation International, Australian Chapter.  In late 2020, Shannon was appointed by the then Deputy Prime Minster, Michael McCormack to the Future of Aviation Reference Panel (made up of four members including Shannon).  She has been included in the #celebratingwomeninlaw campaign recognising women who have had an influence on the legal profession, in 2015 was identified by Australasian Lawyer as one of “50 Women to Watch / Experts in their Field” and has been recognised by Best Lawyers (Aviation) in 2018 and 2019 (prior to leaving private legal practice). 

Shannon speaks regularly at industry events including the Avalon Air Show; the Women in Aviation (Australian Chapter) National Conference; the Association of South Pacific Airlines bi-annual conferences, and the Australian Helicopter Industry Association’s Bi-Annual Rotor-tech Conference and the Australian Aviation Insurance Industry Forum.  She makes regular written contributions to the aviation community via industry updates, QBE publications and the ALAANZ Aviation Briefs. Whilst in private legal practice Shannon was also often sought for media comment on aviation matters in popular news publications. 

Shannon holds degrees in Law and Commerce with a major in Politics and Public Policy from Griffith University, is a mother to two beautiful children, a self-confessed av-geek, prolific reader, pilates and yoga addict, traveller and foodie-in-heels.