John Castello

Director – Executive Legal Recruitment & Search Consultant | Law Firm Sales


What I love about legal recruitment is the incredible quality of people I meet every day and the opportunities I get to change their lives.

I am passionate about people, business, sales, marketing and leadership and recruitment brings all of these areas together in one.



My Areas of Expertise.

Special Counsel to Partner Level Appointments

I have experience recruiting candidates across all areas of law for the following positions in boutique, mid-tier, top-tier and global law firms for the following positions:

  • Special Counsel

  • Salary Partner

  • Equity Partner

  • Managing Partner

  • CEO

Deputy General Counsel to General Counsel

I have experience recruiting candidates across ASX listed and unlisted companies, government departments and not-for-profit organisations for the following positions:

  • General Counsel

  • Deputy General Counsel

  • Company Secretary
  • Deputy Company Secretary
  • Corporate Governance and Risk Manager

Law Firm Sales

I am also a licensed business broker specialised in selling and merging law firms.

I have experience in succesfully selling state based law firms to large national law firms in Australia.

My Recent Appointments.

General Counsel and Director of Corporate Governance & Risk | Leading Private Hospital

We were engaged by a leading Victorian private hospital to appoint their General Counsel and Director of Corporate Governance & Risk.

After completing a full legal executive search of the Victorian market we successfully placed an outstanding candidate into the position.

Director of Family Law | Fast Growing Law Firm


We were engaged by as fast growing law firm to assist them to establish a new family law division for their practice. We conducted a search of the market and successfully appointed a Family Law Director together with their entire family law team for the firm.

Law Firm Sale | National Law Firm


We were engaged by the Managing Director of a national law firm to assist in finding a suitable firm to acquire their practice.

We shortlisted a number of suitable parties based on our knowledge of the market and successfully sold the firm within a short period of time.

Litigation & Insolvency Partner | Mid-Tier Commercial Law Firm


We were engaged by a mid-tier commercial law firm to appoint a Litigation & Insolvency Partner as part of a succession plan for an existing Partner. 

We conducted a full legal search of the market and successfully appointed a highly regarded Litigation & Insolvency Partner who came with their own practice.

Principal Lawyer | Small Geelong Law Firm


We acted for a small Geelong law firm and successfully recruited a Principal Lawyer that had the technical legal expertise, management experience and was local to Geelong.

Principal Family Lawyer | Large National Family Law Firm


We were engaged by one of Australia’s largest specialist family law firms to locate a future leader who was also a Senior Family Lawyer.  This search was part of our clients future growth plans to build the team around the appointed candidate. 

We mapped the Victorian market for senior family lawyers, and knowing the market intimately, we were able to shortlist, confidentially approach and successfully secured an outstanding Principal Family Lawyer for our client.  The appointed candidate is now being developed into becoming the State Practice Group Leader for Victoria.

Senior Class Actions Litigation Lawyer | Leading Specialist Class Actions Law Firm


We were engaged by one of Australia’s leading specialist class action litigation practices to assist them with a nation wide search to appoint a Senior Class Actions Litigation Lawyer to lead a team on a very large high profile class action. 

We conducted a full legal search across all of Australia and successfully placed an outstanding candidate into the position.

Property Law Partner | National Mid Tier Law Firm


We were engaged by a mid-tier national law firm to assist them to appoint a Property Partner with a transportable client base.  

We conducted a full legal search of the market and successfully appointed a highly respected Property Partner who came with a transportable client base of high net worth national and international clients.

Special Counsel Leasing Specialist | Top 20 National Australian Law Firm


We were engaged by a Top 20 national Australian law firm to assist them to recruit a specialist leasing lawyer to service their high profile government and corporate client base. 

We conducted a full legal search of the market and our legal talent database and successfully placed a market leading Accredited Specialist in leasing with our client.

Special Counsel Major Projects & Construction Disputes | Global Tier 1 Law Firm


We acted for a Tier 1 Global Law Firm to recruit a specialist top tier senior litigation and dispute resolution lawyer with experience in large scale complex major project and construction disputes to service their high profile global construction clients. 

We conducted a full legal search of the legal market and our legal talent database and successfully approached and secured a high quality candidate from a top tier law firm.

Construction & Major Projects Partner With Large Practice | Top 10 Australian Law Firm


We acted for a Top 10 national Australian law firm in recruiting a Construction & Major Projects Partner with a multi-million dollar transportable practice which enabled the firm to bolster their legal capability and grow the practice.

Employment & Workplace Relations Law Partner | Top 20 Australian Law Firm


We acted for a Top 20 national Australian law firm in recruiting a well-known and multi-award winning Employment & Workplace Relations Law Partner as part of the firms growth strategy to build the capability of their employment law practice for their large corporate client base.


Had a great experience with John Costello and Dexter. Both top notch recruiters who put a lot of care and time into their work. Highly recommend.

Professional, attentive and personable, John Castello held our hand throughout the pleasant experience, and always kept us informed along the process. Would recommend Gatehouse legal for your legal brokering requirements.



John Castello is professional, efficient and trustworthy. John really listened to what I was looking for – a firm with a positive culture, quality work and growth prospects. To find the right fit for me, John approached one of his trusted contacts from a reputable firm. While the firm was not actively recruiting, I was invited to an interview and a role was created for me. The entire process took just a few weeks.

This opportunity has accelerated my career development. I am so grateful to John for helping me find a firm where I plan to stay long term.


John and Neil were very knowledgeable and supportive throughout the process. Would highly recommend.




I would happily recommend the services of Gatehouse Legal Recruitment. John and his team achieved an amazing result with the sale of my law firm business and worked tirelessly throughout the process. A big thank you to John and his team.



John, Neil and Arjay did a great job securing not just one, but five offers to purchase my Legal Practice, in a process which while daunting, produced the desired result, a successful sale. I would definitely recommend them, in the same way they were recommended to me, by another successful Vendor. 


John at Gatehouse assisted me with the sale of my 26 year old business and he was a pleasure to deal with during the whole process.

I found him to be very professional, warm and friendly. He made sure I was comfortable with the whole process and ensured I was ready with every step both mentally and emotionally. I highly recommend John and his team.


A huge expression of appreciation to John and his team at Gatehouse Business Brokers on the sale of my business.
Their professionalism in preparation, their guidance in the sale process, and the far reaching ability to generate a long list of interested parties to consider my business led to a successful sale in what would otherwise have been impossible to replicate on our own.

There is no denying that there is a lot of work and associated stress for a vendor as well however, John was always available, and managed us and the process, narrowing down a list of potential buyers to the eventual purchasers to achieve a very successful outcome. A special mention to Neil who almost daily, coordinated, communicated and added to the list of new interested parties.

I am more than happy to recommend John and his team as business brokers.


I can highly recommend John Castello as the best in his field when it comes to selling a lagal practice. He provided excellent professional advice as a Legal Practice Broker over a number of months. The result was a successful sale of my practice Melbourne Family Lawyers in 2022. John really knows what he is doing and he does it very well.


John from Gatehouse Legal is an amazing operator. Really good experience dealing with these guys.


John Castello and Neil Reyes did an excellent job assisting me with the sale of my firm. The depth and quality of offers received as a result of their process was very gratifying. Additionally, John and Neil’s approachability and professional manner made a stressful process much easier to face.


John Castello knows his stuff. It is a well run operation, and with timely and good communication and follow up. He sets expectations and then meets them. Highly recommended.


John recently assisted me in obtaining a position in a legal firm which fulfilled all my expectations. I appointed him in January this year and found him at all times to be extremely courteous and professional.

I would recommend his services based on the outcome which he achieved on my behalf.


Working with John was a seamless and productive experience. His expertise, persistence and guidance landed me a senior level role that perfectly aligns with my practice and career aspiration. Highly recommend for anyone seeking a dedicated and results-driven recruiter to maximise her/his career potential. Thank you, John!!!


I have been lucky enough to land a role in the latter part of my career perfectly suited to my experience all through Gatehouse’ Legal’s very efficient expertise. The personal and very positive contact from Gatehouse Legal throughout the searching process was great and boosted my confidence. Thank you!


Current Legal Opportunities.

Family Law Principal (Head of Department): Long Established Successful Firm

Rare opportunity to join this highly regarded, long-established and successful law firm that is in a growth phase with around 65 people.

Find out more >>

Partner – Employment Law Partner – Mid Tier Law Firm

This is a unique opportunity for a Senior Employment Lawyer to join one of Australia’s most respected national law firms who are in an exciting growth phase and looking to make a strategic appointment of an Employment Law Partner to their Team. 

Find out more >>

Specialist Family Law Firm for Sale – Melbourne

This specialist family law firm was established over 30 years ago and has an excellent reputation and brand in Melbourne and internationally.

Find out more >>

About Me.

John is one of Australia’s most respected executive legal recruitment and search consultants, driven to source outstanding opportunities for his candidates and the best legal talent for his clients.

John is very passionate about the legal profession and specialises in executive level legal searches for Partners, Special Counsels, Senior Associates, General Counsels and Senior Legal Counsels. John also assists his clients in establishing new law firms and facilitating law firm mergers and acquisitions.

As both a former lawyer and a specialist legal recruiter, John has been able to use his experience to build a loyal network of candidates and clients, and develop meaningful relationships with key stakeholders around the country

Law Firm Sales

John is also a licensed business broker specialised in selling and merging law firms.

He has achieved success for vendors and has assisted business owners and prospective purchasers in finding opportunities that suits their individual needs and legal expertise.

Level 7, 607 Bourke Street, Melbourne VIC 3000

Phone: + 61 03 9909 7187



Legal Salary Guide

Legal CV Template

Upload CV

Upload Job Vacancy

Privacy Policy

Disclosure Statement

Gatehouse Insights

© Gatehouse Legal Recruitment