August 7, 2018
Recruiting Firms and Organizations for the 2019 Indigenous Summer Student Program
The Indigenous Summer Student Program (ISSP) for first and second year law students is recruiting firms and organizations to participate in the 2019 summer student cycle.
The purpose of the program is to:
  • Provide ongoing support - to participating firms and organizations and students through cultural awareness training, and application and interview preparation for students.
  • Foster understanding - allow law firms and organizations and the legal profession to gain greater insight into Indigenous culture and issues.
  • Improve opportunities - for Indigenous students early in their legal careers to gain work experience in a law firm or organization.
  • Help Indigenous students achieve success - building ongoing mentorship and networking relationships between the students and practising lawyers.
Firms and organizations that are interested in participating will be committing to the following criteria:
  1. The firm commits to participating in the ISSP and will identify for the Law Society which student years they will be accepting applicants for (1L, 2L or both).
  2. Participating firms and organizations will identify their recruiters and program contacts to the Law Society for follow up, and those individuals will commit to participating in a cultural awareness training session, offered free by the Law Society.
  3. Participating firms and organizations will commit to interviewing an agreed number of ISSP students. This number will be discussed with the Law Society but will account for no less than one confirmed interview space.
  4. Participating firms and organizations will acknowledge receipt of applications directly with the ISSP student. We do not require participating firms and organizations to guarantee interviews to every ISSP student. The Law Society will ensure these expectations are communicated with students.
  5. The recruiter will contact the Law Society to advise which ISSP students will not be granted interviews. This is so the Law Society can follow up with ISSP students to assist them in their next steps.
Interested firms and organizations should contact our Program Coordinator by Friday, August 17.
Over the past 13 years, this program has received wide support, with employment opportunities from small firms, large firms, government and organizations. The Law Society of Alberta does not have a role in the interview or hiring process or the employment relationship but will provide ongoing support to program participants and firms and organizations.
Pro Bono Law Alberta Welcomes New Executive Director
Pro Bono Law Alberta (PBLA) is pleased to announce that Nonye Opara has been appointed as incoming Executive Director, succeeding current Executive Director Kendall Moholitny

Ms. Opara will officially begin her new role effective September 17, 2018. She joined PBLA in 2014 and has served in various capacities, including most recently as Director of Programs and Operations and Deputy Executive Director. Ms. Opara completed her LL.B and Baccalaureate in Law in Nigeria, and practised corporate, commercial and technology law for nearly two years post-call before moving to Calgary in 2011 .  She holds a Master of Laws from the University of Calgary and received her Certificate of Qualification from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada in 2014. Prior to joining PBLA, Ms. Opara was a dedicated volunteer at the Civil Claims Duty Counsel Project and the Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program in Calgary.

“Nonye has been an extremely valued member of the Pro Bono Law Alberta team for over four years,” says Kevin Feth, QC, PBLA Board President. “On behalf of the Board of Directors, staff and volunteers of PBLA, I extend her my congratulations and best wishes for success in her new role.”

Outgoing Executive Director Ms. Moholitny began her time with PBLA in February 2013 as the Volunteer Lawyer Services Program Manager and has served as Executive Director since April 1, 2016. She was integral in the expansion of the Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program to Edmonton, the development of legal clinics in Lloydminster and Fort McMurray, and in providing legal advice and information to victims of the 2013 Calgary flood and the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfire, among many other important access to justice initiatives. PBLA’s Board of Directors and staff wish Ms. Moholitny the best as she transitions to her new position as Manager of Early Intervention with the Law Society of Alberta.

PBLA remains committed to promoting pro bono activities for lawyers, with the goal of increased access to justice for all Albertans. To discuss how you can become involved in pro bono, email  Ms. Opara or visit their website.  
Viscount Bennett Scholarship Award Recipients
The Law Society of Alberta is pleased to announce that Joshua Sealy-Harrington and Maeghan Toews are two of four recipients of the 2018 Viscount Bennett Scholarship.

Joshua Sealy-Harrington obtained his Juris Doctor (JD) from the University of Calgary in 2013. He achieved a grade point average within the top 10 per cent of the Faculty of Law in his first year of law as well as multiple academic awards.
Joshua will use his scholarship toward his graduate studies at Columbia Law School. His studies will focus on Critical Race Theory and its overlap with civil rights and criminal law.

He currently clerks at the Supreme Court of Canada for the Honourable Justice Clément Gascon. Joshua also chairs the Editorial Committee for the Canadian Bar Association – Alberta Branch.

After completing his degree at Columbia, Joshua plans to return to Alberta to seek a faculty position at either the University of Alberta or the University of Calgary.

Maeghan Toews obtained her JD from the University of Toronto. She then continued her education at Leiden University, graduating cum laude from the LL.M. advanced programme in Public International Law.

Maeghan is completing her PhD at the University of Alberta. With help from the Viscount Bennett Scholarship, she will continue her doctoral research in Canadian health law and policy. She hopes to contribute to the development of property law regarding the human body through her research.

Maeghan resides in Australia, where she lectures at the University of Adelaide Law School. She grew her expertise in health law as a research associate with the University of Alberta Health Law Institute from 2013 to 2016.

In 2014, she was awarded the James Kreppner Fellowship by Canadian Blood Services. Through her academic experiences, Maeghan has become a leader on legal and policy issues regarding organ donation and transplantation.

The Viscount Bennett Scholarship is financed from a trust fund established by the Right Honourable Viscount Bennett to encourage a high standard of legal education, training and excellence. This annual award for post-graduate studies in law is presented to individuals who are dedicated to their community and profession, and who wish to further their legal education. 

The other two scholarship recipients will be profiled in our next eBulletin.
Court Notices
Have you considered making a contingency plan for your law practice?