Meet the Team
Rob Roy Rankin, Principal and Founder
Rob began his career in intellectual property law in the pharmaceutical industry and then moved into general commercial law as a partner in a Melbourne law firm.
Embracing the core values of integrity, innovation, and growth, and with a focus on better client services and flexible pricing models not available with other firms, Rob started his own boutique practice, Rankin & Co.
Rob’s passion is to help people to grow professionally. His vision and ability to nurture relationships lead to long-term solutions and success.
Ben Elbaum, Senior Associate and Tax Guru
Ben’s specialty tax knowledge allows him to advise clients in a diverse range of tax related matters, including structuring of mergers and acquisitions and resolution of disputes with tax and government authorities. He has assisted clients in relation to both federal and state taxes and has experience in implementing practical strategies to effectively deal with tax and corporate related issues.
Joseph Carneli, Senior Associate
Joseph is an experienced commercial solicitor with degrees in both Law and Business. Before coming to the law, Joseph managed a small family business for many years and also worked in marketing and product management. He therefore has a unique insight into the everyday challenges faced by small businesses and consequently offers his clients legal advice that is realistic, commercial and above all can be practically acted upon.
Rachel Derrico, Senior Associate
Rachel is an employment lawyer with a background in commercial law, employment law and human resources roles. She worked in the human resources team at Abigroup Contractors (now Lend Lease) which then led her to work in private practice in boutique law firms. Rachel was admitted in 2010 and has achieved her Master of Laws (Workplace and Employment Law) at Monash University.
Sofia Garcia Ladera, Consultant (Admitted in England and Wales; not admitted in Australia)
Sofia is a litigation and arbitration lawyer admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales with a background in commercial litigation, cross-border arbitration disputes and financial regulatory investigations. Sofia trained in England at Herbert Smith Freehills, worked as an associate at “Litigation Firm of the Year “ Gibson Dunn and more recently worked at Hogan Lovells. Sofia has joined Rankin & Co as a Consultant assisting the dispute resolution team and is in the process of seeking admittance as an Australian lawyer.
Dr Melanie Tan, Lawyer and Medico-Legal Consultant
Melanie is a dual qualified lawyer and medical practitioner. She graduated in Medicine from Melbourne University and completed her hospital internship before relocating to the UK, where she studied Law at Cambridge University before qualifying as a solicitor in London, and subsequently Victoria.
Melanie has worked as a medical negligence solicitor, medical indemnity claims manager, and more recently as a medico-legal and medical adviser with medical defence organisations. Over this period she has maintained her clinical practice, working as a locum doctor in emergency departments. Melanie is currently writing a PhD thesis in Law examining concepts of risk at its interface with Medicine.
Robert Patterson, Chief Operating Officer
Robert is a highly experienced executive, passionate about strategy, marketing and IT. He has invested the last 20 years of his career leading and driving the substantial growth of national professional services firms. Robert is excited to be part of Rankin & Co. because he believes that its focus on client experience (accessibility, responsiveness, flexibility), lawyer engagement and virtual business model represent the future of law in Australia.
Stacey Brennan, Chief of Staff
As Chief of Staff at Rankin & Co. Stacey’s role includes support to our lawyers as well as our clients, paralegal duties, accounts, and general practice management.
To supplement her expertise around the firm, she is also studying a Juris Doctor through the online program at Deakin University.
Holly Bailey, Executive Assistant (Mission Controller)
Holly forms part of the Rankin & Co. admin team as Executive Assistant to Rob. A keen networker and relationship builder, Holly brings with her extensive experience supporting senior executives, as well as energy and enthusiasm for her work. Holly plays a pivotal role at Rankin & Co. providing support to our colleagues and clients. Holly enjoys playing footy and netball on the weekends and is passionate about supporting women in sport at all levels.
Daniela Esposito, Marketing
Daniela has an extensive background in marketing, communications and graphic design. Along with managing our website, social media profiles and monthly newsletter, her emphasis on brand positioning and building relationships with our referral partners are key skills that she brings to the team.
Byron White, Paralegal
Byron joined Rankin & Co. during his JD studies at the University of Melbourne. He brings a unique skillset to the Rankin & Co. team including a background in Science (B-SCI University of Melbourne with first class honours) and experience running his own business. As a fast paced and rapidly growing firm, Rankin & Co. are cautious of hiring students or freshly graduated lawyers. Byron is an exception. He is a highly motivated and fast learner and is making valuable contributions to the team in terms of legal problem solving, research, paralegal duties and marketing.