President’s Message

Justice Gillian D. ButlerI am honored to serve you as President of the Canadian Chapter of the non-profit International Association of Women Judges having more than 4,700 members in 75 countries worldwide and I am committed to directing and supporting the efforts of the Chapter’s Board of Directors.

As Justice Lana Krogan explained in her last membership solicitation letter:

“The IAWJ works with its members around the world to cultivate a growing global network of women judges, create opportunities for judicial exchange, pioneer judicial education programs and advance human rights, eliminate gender bias from judicial systems, and promote equal access to the courts.  The CCIAWJ works closely with the IAWJ to fulfill these goals.”

From the Chapter’s portion of the membership fees that you remit, we support programs that advance issues of importance to women through various arms of our legal system.

The Speakers Bureau of the CCIAWJ organizes events at approximately ten law schools across Canada each year to bring women judges together with law students for informal discussions. This will continue this year although in a virtual format.  As in prior years, our chapter will present and provide the award for the annual Gale Cup Moot and cover the registration fees of 10 international judges and 10 Canadian provincial court judges to attend the bi-annual IAWJ international conference.

Last year one of our Chapter’s new initiatives was through the Elizabeth Fry Project associated with Dalhousie Law School.  Our donation to this Project covered the costs associated with several applications for judicial pardons for women who had served their sentences, were striving to reintegrate into society in a meaningful manner but who found the cost of the application prohibitive.

Our Project Committee, chaired by Justice Marina Paperny, is currently reviewing proposals for new initiatives that will further our mandate within the constraints presented by the current Covid-19 pandemic.  This will be an ongoing process so if you have ideas that you would like to share, I encourage you to contact her at marina.paperny@albertacourts.ca .

The IAWJ’s 15th International Biennial Conference which was to be held in Auckland, New Zealand on May 7-10, 2020 has been postponed to May 7 – 9 2021.  The conference will now be a virtual-in person format on the theme of “Celebrating Diversity”. Members will receive notice of the registration process at a later date.

In years when the international conference is not held, the CCIAWJ hosts a conference at a location within Canada.  I am pleased to report that the next CCIAWJ conference will be held in Yellowknife, NWT on June 21-23, 2022.  Please mark these dates in your calendars in the hopes that by this time we will once again be able to assemble in person.

In the coming months, under the direction of incoming Communications and Membership Committee chairs (Judge Laurie Halfpenny MacQuarrie and Justice Angela McLeod) you will notice changes to both our website and the manner in which we communicate with members.

Stay tuned and stay safe.

Justice Gillian D. Butler
Newfoundland and Labrador Court of Appeal