Law Society of Saskatchewan

Convocation Highlights

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By Melanie Hodges Neufeld

The Law Society of Saskatchewan Benchers met on April 25-27. In addition to setting the SLIA levy, as we posted yesterday, below are several highlights from Convocation. For more information, including previous agendas, minutes and future Convocation dates, please see our website.

Annual General Meeting – In a continuation of the Law Society’s efforts to address the TRC Calls to Action, the focus of this year’s CPD Presentation at the Annual General Meeting was the implications of the TRC recommendations for the legal profession. Our panel of the Honorable Judge Gerald Morin, Professor Larry Chartrand and Leanne Bellegarde, Q.C. each approached this question from their unique viewpoints. This presentation was recorded and is available to purchase. To order the recorded version of a Webinar or Seminar materials, please contact Linda Euteneier (CPD Administrator) at 306.569.8242 or linda.euteneier@lawsociety.sk.ca

At the conclusion of the discussion, cocktails commenced allowing time for networking with panel members, colleagues, and members of the Bar. Dinner and the business matters concluded the evening. The Law Society’s 2017 Annual Report and Financial Statements are available on our website.

Senate of the University of Saskatchewan – Karen Prisciak, Q.C. resigned from this board and Max Bilson was elected by the Benchers to fill this role. We wish to extend gratitude to Ms. Prisciak for her time on the board and welcome Mr. Bilson.

E.M. Culliton Scholarship Deadline – May 4, 2018

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The application deadline is fast approaching for students pursuing graduate studies in criminal law. Up to two scholarships are available. The criteria for the selection of the recipients of the annual scholarship are as follows:

The scholarship will be awarded to a graduating student of the College of Law, University of Saskatchewan or to a resident practicing member of The Law Society of Saskatchewan for the pursuit of graduate studies in criminal law at a recognized institution. The recipient will be selected on the basis of academic record and research potential, service to the practice of law in Saskatchewan, and such other guidelines as from time to time may be determined appropriate by the committee.

The scholarship endowment fund was set up in perpetuity as a tribute to the former Chief Justice E.M. Culliton, who served as a Justice of the Court of Appeal from 1951 to 1962, and then became Chief Justice for the period of 1962 to 1981. Learn more about his contributions to the province at SaskLawCourts.ca.

The Law Society of Saskatchewan is pleased to continue to support local Saskatchewan students pursuing their goals in the legal field. Our own Melanie Hodges Neufeld, Director of legal Resources, was the recipient of the scholarship in 2005:

Without the financial support of the Culliton Scholarship, it would have been difficult to continue with my graduate work in the area of restorative justice. Not only was I able to pursue my intellectual interests, but contribute an important research piece to the criminal justice field in the province.  

Please complete application form and return to:

The Law Society of Saskatchewan
1100 – 2002 Victoria Avenue
Regina, SK
S4P 0R7

New Law Society President and Vice President Elected

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At Convocation on December 1, 2017, the Benchers, elected Craig Zawada, Q.C., as President and Leslie Belloc-Pinder as Vice President for 2018. We congratulate our new President and Vice President and would like to thank our outgoing President, Erin Kleisinger, Q.C., for her tireless work in 2017. Please see our website for a full list of our Benchers.

CRAIG ZAWADA, Q.C.

Craig grew up in Shell Lake, SK, and attended the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Commerce (now Edwards School of Business).  After obtaining his LL.B. at Osgoode Hall in Toronto and working for a time in Calgary, he returned to Saskatchewan and has practiced in Saskatoon since 1987. Craig’s practice has focused on intellectual property law, plus work in corporate acquisitions and agricultural contracting.

In 1996 he helped found WMCZ Lawyers and was CEO for 9 years. He became the firm’s Director of Boundary Pushing in 2016, a position that leverages his skills in technology, marketing and strategic planning.

Craig has been active in community and non-legal organizations through his career. Some of his roles have included Chair of the Saskatchewan Research Council, University of Saskatchewan Senate, Trustee and Treasurer for Saskatoon’s Mendel Art Gallery and the CanLII national board of directors. Craig taught Intellectual Property Law for many years at the U of S College of Law.

Craig developed a strong interest in corporate governance issues through the Director’s College program. He obtained his Chartered Director designation and continues as a faculty member for the College. He also conducts training and consultation on governance issues for a variety of businesses and non-profit organizations.

After he was appointed a Bencher by the Law Society in 2014, Craig was re-elected in 2015.

Craig has discovered that running 9 marathons is about enough to cure him of that habit, although he can’t bring himself to stop running completely. He and his wife Dianne Martin enjoy exploring Canada and the US on their motorcycle.

LESLIE BELLOC-PINDER

Leslie was born and raised in Saskatoon, and convocated from the College of Law in 1984 at the ripe old age of 22. She articled and worked as a junior lawyer with McDougall Ready Wakeling, where she developed an appetite for litigation that was next satisfied at Saskatoon Rural Legal Aid. In 1989, she joined Hnatyshyn and Company, and has now spent 28 happy and productive years with her partners, who are also cherished friends and travelling companions. Leslie’s practice focussed primarily on civil litigation, with an emphasis on child protection, until her appointment as an Adjudicator with the Indian Residential School’s Independent Assessment Process (2009-2016). In that capacity. Leslie travelled across Canada conducting IAP compensation hearings and preparing original and review (appeal) decisions. With this work now nearly complete, Leslie sits more often at her desk than airport gates, working as an arbitrator, investigator, litigator, and mentor.

Leslie has other administrative tribunal experience including the Saskatchewan Farm Land Security Board for 12 years, with 10 as Chair, and 6 years on Saskatoon’s Municipal Planning Commission. In 2016, she was appointed by the federal Minister of Labour to decide complaints under the Canada Labour Code. In 2017, the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change named Leslie a Review Officer responsible to conduct hearings pursuant to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999.

Happy to share her enthusiasm for the practice of law, Leslie was a sessional lecturer for both the Colleges of Commerce (Business Law) and Law (Civil Procedure) at the U of S for a decade. She has devoted much time and energy advocating for women and social justice initiatives, with such organizations as LEAF and the Saskatoon Women’s Network. Beginning when her daughter first kicked a ball, Leslie spent years patrolling soccer field side-lines, proudly managing teams of irrepressible girls who grew into dedicated elite athletes. She is now suffering from soccer-mom withdrawal.

Leslie was elected as a Bencher from Saskatoon in 2015, and has served on the Ethics, Professional Standards, Conduct Investigation, Legal Resources, and Justicia committees.

When not mothering, working, or planning an adventure abroad, Leslie loves to be physically active and spend as much time as possible with friends and family. Like Craig, she has experienced the triumphs and despair of marathon running and hopes to keep pace with him during the coming year. Leslie has two children who are now adults, graduates of the U of S, and wonderful people.

 

 

Law Society’s Annual Report is now available!

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By Kelly Laycock

The Law Society’s Annual General Meeting is this week, and we have our new 2016 Annual Report ready for you to read! Don’t miss the President’s Message from Erin Kleisinger, QC, the Executive and Deputy Director’s Reports, as well as committee updates on the successes of 2016. A look ahead at upcoming initiatives and ongoing projects in 2017 can be found in the Director’s Reports. The Audited Financial Reports for both the Law Society and SLIA are available on our website.

Don’t forget to register for the AGM before 4:00pm Tuesday, June 13!

Past Presidents of the Law Society of Saskatchewan

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By Kelly Laycock

For all those history buffs, this is the complete list of the past presidents of the Law Society of Saskatchewan since its inception in 1907. This list was originally published as an appendix in Iain Mentiplay’s book, A Century of Integrity: The Law Society of Saskatchewan 1907 to 2007, and has recently been updated for the latest issue of the Benchers’ Digest to include the presidents from the past 10 years. In that update, we inadvertently forgot to include Mr. Robert Heinrichs, QC, who took over as president in May 2014 after the Honourable Miguel Martinez was appointed to the Provincial Court. We offer our sincerest apologies to Mr. Heinrichs for that omission. Please find the correction in the list below and in the online Spring 2017 issue of the Benchers’ Digest. If you want to learn more about the history of the Law Society, we’ll be posting more historical gems over the coming months to celebrate our 110th anniversary. Stay tuned! Read the rest of this entry »

Providing Legal Resources to Lawyers in Smaller Communities – Law Society Library & Access to Justice

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By Melanie Hodges Neufeld

Providing publicly accessible legal resources and information increases the public’s understanding of legal matters and ability to handle these matters. In addition to the numerous public resources created and provided by the Library and research assistance, the Library is also involved in several access to justice initiatives. Please see a recent article in our Benchers’ Digest (page 6) “Putting the Public First – Saskatchewan Access to Legal Information Project” for more information on this initiatives.

However, it is important to recognize that the definition of access to justice is broader than just assisting self-represented litigants. Access to justice also includes ensuring members of the public have access to competent and affordable legal services. The resources and services provided by the Law Society Library enable lawyers, particularly in smaller centres, to adequately service their communities. Our Members’ Section ensures our members have access to the resources they need no matter their location. It is already difficult to attract new lawyers to smaller communities. A lack of resources could potentially make these locations even less attractive and leave communities without legal services.

If you are a lawyer practicing in a smaller community in Saskatchewan, please share your voice and review the following notice regarding funding to maintain legal resources, such as WestlawNext, and the other resources available through the Members’ Section and the Law Society Library. Once you have reviewed the notice, please complete the survey contained within. The deadline to complete the survey is April 7th. We appreciate your time and feedback.

 

 

New Law Society President and Vice President Elected

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By Melanie Hodges Neufeld

The Law Society of Saskatchewan, at its November 2016 Convocation, elected Erin Kleisinger, Q.C., as President, and Craig Zawada, Q.C., as Vice President, for 2017. We congratulate our new President and Vice President and would like to thank our outgoing President, Perry Erhardt, Q.C., for his hard work in 2016. Please see our website for a full list of our Benchers.

 

kleisingerERIN KLEISINGER, Q.C.

Ms. Kleisinger is a partner with McDougall Gauley LLP in Regina.  She has a varied commercial and litigation practice, with a focus on University and privacy law.

Erin attended Queen’s University where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Philosophy in 1989 and her LLB in 1992.  She returned to Saskatchewan to article with McDougall Ready and was admitted to the Saskatchewan bar in 1993.  She became a partner with (now) McDougall Gauley LLP in 1999.   She was awarded her Queen’s Counsel designation in 2015.

Erin was appointed a Bencher by the Law Society in February 2014 to fill the vacancy created by the appointment of (His Honour) Patrick Reis to the Provincial Court.  She was re-elected in 2015, and elected Vice-President by the Benchers in November, 2015.  She has served on the Executive, Conduct Investigation and Governance Committees and chaired the Professional Standards Committee in 2015.

Erin is currently on the Board of Group Medical Services / GMS Insurance Inc. and on the Executive of the Canadian Association of University Solicitors.  Her professional activities include being a former board member and President of SKLESI, and the present Chair (and a faculty member) of the Law Society’s Trial Advocacy Skills Workshop.  She has also served as a director of the Saskatchewan Branch of the Children’s Wish Foundation and CAA Saskatchewan.

 

zawadaCRAIG ZAWADA, Q.C.

Craig grew up in Shell Lake, SK, and attended the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Commerce (now Edwards School of Business).  After obtaining his LL.B. at Osgoode Hall in Toronto and working for a time in Calgary, he returned to Saskatchewan and has practiced in Saskatoon since 1987.  Craig has worked in intellectual property law, commercial law and agricultural contracting.  He was CEO of WMCZ Lawyers for 9 years, a firm he helped found in 1996.  In 2016 he became the firm’s Director of Boundary Pushing, a position that leverages his skills in technology, marketing and strategic planning.

Craig has been active in community and non-legal organizations through his career.  Some of his roles have included Chair of the Saskatchewan Research Council, University of Saskatchewan Senate, Trustee and Treasurer for Saskatoon’s Mendel Art Gallery and the CanLII national board of directors.  Craig taught Intellectual Property Law for many years at the U of S College of Law.

Craig developed a strong interest in corporate governance issues through the Director’s College program.  He obtained his Chartered Director designation and continues as a faculty member for the College.  He also conducts training and consultation on governance issues for a variety of businesses and non-profit organizations.

After he was appointed a Bencher by the Law Society in 2014, Craig was re-elected in 2015.  He has served on the Access to Justice and Admissions & Education Committees, and chairs the Governance and Trust Safety Committees.

Craig is a recovering marathon runner and one of the world’s slowest motorcycle enthusiasts.