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2018 NSBS Annual Meeting to feature two keynotes: client panel and address by Chief Justice Michael MacDonald

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J. Michael MacDonald

The Nova Scotia Barristers' Society is pleased to announce the lineup of sessions and presenters for the 2018 NSBS Annual Meeting and Professional Development Program. All lawyers, articled clerks and non-practising members are invited to attend the June 16 event, which begins at 8:30 am with the Annual Meeting portion.

Saturday, June 16, 2018
8:30 am to 12:15 pm 
Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University
6061 University Ave., Halifax



Community Engagement and Increasing Diversity on the Bench; Two Pillars to Enhance Access to Justice

Our guest speaker for this keynote address is the Honourable J. Michael MacDonald, Chief Justice of Nova Scotia and Chief Justice of the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal. He will discuss his Court’s efforts to implement Justice Linda Lee Oland’s recommendations to encourage diversity on the Bench, and its engagement work toward enhancing access to justice for marginalized communities.

Chief Justice MacDonald has served alongside the provincial Minister of Justice on Nova Scotia’s Access to Justice Coordinating Committee since 2014. Born and raised in Whitney Pier, he was called to the Nova Scotia Bar in 1979, initially practising in Sydney, where he also served as President of the Cape Breton Barristers’ Society. He was appointed a judge of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court in 1995 and Associate Chief Justice three years later. In 2004, he became the province’s 22nd Chief Justice.

Client panel: What do we want from our lawyers and the justice system?

In this keynote panel, discussion will include insights from clients who will help lawyers understand what they need and want in their representation. Speakers include Rodney Small of Common Good Solutions; Paul Elliott from Moose Cree First Nation; Sheree Conlon QC of Stewart McKelvey, NSBS Council member and Co-Chair of the Society’s Gender Equity Committee; and Alisha Brown-Fagan, Co-Chair of the Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission’s Equity and Racial Diversity Committee and executive member of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers, Nova Scotia chapter. 


This year's program provides attendees with their choice of two consecutive 45-minute sessions from the following options:

  • TRC – How to put the calls to action to work in your practice; Josie McKinney, Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Service
  • Protecting your client’s privacy; David Fraser, McInnes Cooper
  • Opening a new law firm; Jennifer Pink, NSBS Legal Services Support Manager and Rosalie Francis, R. Francis Law
  • NSBS Diversity Standard / Guidelines for trans* and gender-variant clients; Susanne Litke, Dalhousie Legal Aid Service; and Jane Willwerth, NSBS Officer, Equity & Access

To confirm your attendance at the 2018 Annual Meeting and Professional Development Program, RSVP to, indicating the two educational sessions you plan to attend.

See the event page and the printable PDF program for more details, including session descriptions and the schedule. If you have any questions, please contact the Society at 902 422 1491 or