Megan O'Rourke

In my 19 years of insurance I’ve never attended a contract training [workshop] as comprehensive or engaging as this. I finally feel like I get it!

- Adrian Johns, Arthur J Gallagher, comments on Megan O’Rourke’s ‘The Art of Contract Reviews’ workshop
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Megan O'Rourke

Special Counsel

Megan O’Rourke is a special counsel in our Insurance & Health team and the firm's National Leader for Client Education and Training in Insurance. She is also principal facilitator of Barry.Nilsson.’s training business, Elevista Interactive Learning, which is now the major focus of her work at the firm.

‘During the early stages of my career, I was fortunate to work with some exceptional insurance lawyers. As part of an insurance team with a national firm, I gained excellent training as a litigator, legal drafter and providing policy advice. I then worked for over seven years in-house, where I saw first hand how the multi-faceted roles within an insurance company (and then an insurance brokerage) operated, including senior corporate management, underwriting, sales, claims and business development.’

Megan has over 20 years’ experience in advising Australian and international insurance and corporate clients on complex indemnity, defence and coverage issues. She has a special interest in insurance policy drafting and emerging risks, including cyber insurance.

When she joined Barry.Nilsson., Megan assisted Robert Samut to establish Elevista Interactive Learning. Through Elevista, Megan builds and facilitates training programs for insurance and risk professionals, including workshops, webinars, conference presentations and training courses.

A talented and highly regarded trainer, Megan’s work for Elevista has included running extensive risk and education programs across Australia and New Zealand for major insurance companies and some of Australia’s insurance broker ‘powerhouses’.

Megan has also played a key role developing products such as B.N.’s Pensure Indemnity Check, (which provides discrete and affordable advice on the effectiveness of contract risk and insurance terms), and Cyber Comparisons, (which help clients navigate the often complex issues associated with cyber insurance).

‘Over the years I have developed a genuine passion for education. My approach is never to lecture. Instead we try in every Elevista workshop to create an educational atmosphere that is relaxed, entertaining and audience-inclusive. We’ve found this allows participants to be much more open to receiving new information, analysing its application and sharing their own thoughts and experiences. That’s when real learning happens.’

‘We also strive to focus our workshops on issues of practical importance to the industry; I take personal delight in breaking down a complex topic and communicating it in a way that allows someone to leave [a workshop] not only with a deeper understanding of the issue, but the confidence to apply what they’ve learnt in their everyday business lives.’

Megan is listed in 2017 to 2019 and 2021 to 2022 editions of Best Lawyers for Insurance Law, and was named a Finalist Special Counsel of the Year in the 2017 Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards.

‘Barry.Nilsson. has always been a firm that values and invests in lateral thinking. We developed Elevista to meet what we perceived to be a real demand for elevated, specialized training in the insurance industry. Our success over the past decade tells me we were right.’ 

Megan's Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Laws (Hons)
  • Bachelor of Arts (English & Mathematics)

Megan’s publications and speaking engagements

  • CyberFiles
  • APIG Queensland Annual General Meeting, August 2017
  • Cyber in Business Conference (Sydney), July 2017
  • Cyber in Business Conference, December 2016
  • Australian Airport Association Queensland Conference, 2016
  • WR Berkley National Underwriting Conference, 2015
  • GRC National Conference, Melbourne, 2013
  • AURIMS/ANZUIAG National Conference, 2012 & 2013
  • New Zealand Society for Risk Management, 2012
  • RMIA Queensland Chapter Education Evening, Brisbane 2012
  • RMIA National Conference, Melbourne, 2011

Megan’s leadership

  • Member, Australian Insurance Law Association (AILA)
  • Member, Women in Insurance (Queensland Chapter)


Insurance and Health