Government of Canada announces judicial appointments in the province of Quebec

News Release

June 23, 2017 – Ottawa, Ontario – Department of Justice Canada  

The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced the following appointments under the new judicial application process announced on October 20, 2016. The new process emphasizes transparency, merit, and diversity, and will continue to ensure the appointment of jurists who meet the highest standards of excellence and integrity. 

The Honourable Étienne Parent, a judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal, is appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec for the district of Saint-Maurice (Shawinigan). He replaces Mr. Justice R.W. Pronovost, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective July 2, 2016.

The Honourable Jean-François Émond, a judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal, is appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec for the district of Quebec City. He replaces Mr. Justice Simon Ruel, who has been elevated to the Quebec Court of Appeal.

The Honourable Simon Ruel, a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec, is appointed a judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal in Quebec City. He replaces Mr. Justice Jean-François Émond, who is returning to the Superior Court of Quebec in Quebec City.

The Honourable Jocelyn F. Rancourt, a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec, is appointed a judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal in Quebec City. He replaces Mr. Justice Étienne Parent, who is returning to the Superior Court of Quebec in Shawinigan.

Peter Kalichman, a partner at Irving Mitchell Kalichman LLP, is appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec for the district of Montreal. He replaces Madam Justice D. Mayrand, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective May 8, 2017.

Marie-France Vincent, a partner at Baribeau Vincent LLP, is appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec for the district of Quebec City. She replaces Mr. Justice Jocelyn F. Rancourt, who has been elevated to the Quebec Court of Appeal.

Biographies

Mr. Justice Étienne Parent was named a puisne judge of the Superior Court of Quebec in 2006. From 2007 to 2011, he led the Commercial Division for the district of Quebec. He then became coordinating judge for the district of Arthabaska, a position he held until his appointment as a puisne justice of the Quebec Court of Appeal on June 30, 2015.

From 1983 until his appointment to the Superior Court, Justice Parent practised as a lawyer with the firm of Parent Doyon Rancourt in Saint-Georges-de-Beauce, his hometown. He maintained a general practice, covering most areas of law and appearing before both the civil courts and various administrative tribunals. He received an LL.B. from Université Laval in 1982 and was admitted to the Quebec Bar the following year. In tandem with his professional activities, Justice Parent was involved in different charitable organizations in the Beauce region. He taught business law at Cégep Lévis-Lauzon and at Cégep Beauce-Appalaches. One of Justice Parent’s guiding values is a commitment to making justice more accessible for all through an effective and simplified approach and within a respectful and equitable framework.

Mr. Justice Jean-François Émond received his civil law degree from Université Laval in 1988 and was called to the Quebec Bar in 1989. He practised law with the firms of Stein Monast from 2007 to 2009, Desjardins Ducharme Stein Monast from 2003 to 2007, and Huot Laflamme (Marquis Huot) from 1988 to 2003. His practice focused on civil law, property law, and commercial law. In addition to his professional activities, Justice Émond was also involved with numerous organizations, including serving as Vice President on the Executive Committee of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec. He was also one of the founding members of the Quebec City International Festival of Military Bands and of the Rendez-vous naval de Québec. Moreover, he has served on the Planning Advisory Committee of the City of Sainte-Foy.

In May 2009, Justice Émond was named a judge of the Superior Court of Quebec. He was the coordinating judge of the Commercial Division for the district of Quebec City from 2010 to 2014. In June 2014, Justice Émond was appointed to the Quebec Court of Appeal, where he served for just over three years until his current appointment to the Superior Court. In addition to his strictly judicial functions, Justice Émond has been committed to teaching judicial writing through educational programs offered by the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice and the National Judicial Institute.

In his work as a judge, whether on the Superior Court or the Court of Appeal, Justice Émond has always emphasized applying and interpreting the law in ways that promote the achievement of just and equitable results. Addressing issues of access to justice is also a central concern for Justice Émond.

Mr. Justice Simon Ruel was appointed to the Quebec Superior Court in 2014. He has experience hearing matters in all areas of law, including criminal law, family law, constitutional law, Aboriginal law, administrative law, and civil and commercial law.

As a lawyer, Justice Ruel practised mainly in public and administrative law and government affairs. He was a member of the Quebec Bar (1995) and of the Law Society of Upper Canada (2007). After beginning his career with the firm Grey Casgrain, he subsequently became a litigator and counsel to the federal Department of Justice, the Privy Council Office, and the Department of Finance. Before his appointment, he was a partner with the firm BCF Business Law in Quebec City; previously, he had been a partner with Heenan Blaikie.

Justice Ruel participated as counsel in numerous federal and provincial public inquiries and investigations. These included the federal Commission of Inquiry into the Sponsorship Program and Advertising Activities, the Cornwall Public Inquiry, and the Commission of Inquiry on the Process for Appointing Judges. He also participated in the coroner’s inquest into deaths caused by Legionnaires’ disease in Quebec City in 2012 and represented the Manitoba Commission of Inquiry into the Circumstances Surrounding the Death of Phoenix Sinclair. Moreover, he advised the Canadian Judicial Council on reforms to the judicial disciplinary process.

In addition to his practice, Justice Ruel taught public and administrative law at the Quebec Bar School and was a lecturer at the University of Ottawa in civil and commercial evidence. He has authored or co-authored numerous legal publications, articles, and commentaries on public and administrative law. He has participated as a speaker, organizer, or moderator in legal conferences on topics relating particularly to legal ethics, public law, and inquiries. Justice Ruel currently serves on the executive of the Canadian Bar Association Judges’ Forum.

Born in Quebec City, the eldest of six children, Mr. Justice Jocelyn F. Rancourt received a Bachelor’s of Social Science (industrial relations) from Université Laval in 1981 and a law degree from the same university in 1984. Admitted to the Quebec Bar in 1985, he began his legal career with McDougall Caron in Montreal. In 1988, he joined the firm of Ogilvy Renault (now Norton Rose Fulbright) to practise labour and employment law – first in Montreal and then, after 1991, in Quebec City. Justice Rancourt was national chair of the firm’s labour and employment law group and a member of its national executive committee until his appointment to the Superior Court of Quebec in June 2015.

Throughout his career as a lawyer, Justice Rancourt published numerous articles and made presentations at conferences on topics related to human rights, labour law, and occupational health and safety. He was also an instructor for 15 years at the École du Barreau du Québec. In 2014, he was recognized as the best labour lawyer in Quebec City by the publication Best Lawyers.

In addition to his professional career, Justice Rancourt was a co-founder of the primary school La Petite Académie de St-Hyacinthe. He was also chair of the board of the Université Laval Alumni Association and of the Royal Quebec Golf Club.

Mr. Justice Peter Kalichman was born and raised in Montreal. He earned a B.A. from McGill University before attending the Université de Montréal, where he earned his law degree. Justice Kalichman’s entire career as a lawyer was spent in civil and commercial litigation. In the 17 years prior to his appointment, he was a partner at Irving Mitchell Kalichman LLP, a firm based in Montreal that specialized in litigation.

In addition to practising as a trial lawyer, Justice Kalichman taught trial advocacy at the Faculty of Law at McGill University for 15 years and was a regular speaker and panelist on various aspects of litigation, including evidence and procedure. He also served on various committees of the Montreal Bar Association and acted as an arbitrator on the Conseil d’arbitrage des comptes des avocats du Barreau du Québec. Throughout his career, Justice Kalichman received wide recognition for his accomplishments as a trial lawyer, including being named a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, which is recognized as the preeminent organization of trial lawyers in North America.  He was also listed among the Top 50 Trial Lawyers in Canada by Benchmark Litigation and was recognized as a leading practitioner in litigation by numerous legal publications, including LEXPERT, Chambers Global, and Best Lawyers.

Apart from his involvement in law, Justice Kalichman has been an active member of Montreal’s Jewish community over the past 25 years. He has served on a variety of boards and committees of Federation Combined Jewish Appeal and the YM-YWHA Jewish Community Centers of Montreal.

Excerpts from Justice Kalichman’s judicial application will be available shortly.

Madam Justice Marie-France Vincent received her LL.B. from Laval University in 1995 and was admitted to the Quebec Bar in 1996. A native of Quebec City, she began her legal career in Montreal, maintaining a general practice. She later pursued her career in Quebec City, where she specialized in family law and became a certified family mediator in 2007.

Throughout her 20-year career as a lawyer, Justice Vincent has dedicated her time and energy to various community groups and legal associations – including the Association des familialistes de Québec, where she served as a board member from 2009 and was president from 2011 to 2013. Her main motivation has always been the advancement of family law and access to justice. As an active member of several liaison committees between the bar and the Superior Court of Quebec, she has worked closely with members of the judiciary on reforming family law practice and procedure within the district of Quebec City. She is also known in Quebec City as an accredited family mediator and trial lawyer serving the Anglophone community.

Married and the mother of teenage twin daughters, Justice Vincent knows how to navigate and mediate conflict with a smile and a sense of humor.

Excerpts from Justice Vincent’s judicial application will be available shortly.

Quick Facts

  • Budget 2017 includes additional funding of $55 million over five years beginning in 2017-2018 and $15.5 million per year thereafter for 28 new federally appointed judges. Of these new positions, 12 will be allotted to Alberta and one to the Yukon, with the remaining 15 being assigned to a pool for needs in other jurisdictions.
  • To ensure a judiciary that is responsive, ethical and sensitive to the evolving needs of Canadian society, the Canadian Judicial Council will receive $2.7 million over five years and $0.5 million ongoing thereafter. This will support programming on judicial education, ethics and conduct, including in relation to gender and cultural sensitivity.
  • Federal judicial appointments are made by the Governor General, acting on the advice of the federal Cabinet and recommendations from the Minister of Justice.
  • The Judicial Advisory Committees across Canada play a key role in evaluating judicial applications. There are 17 Judicial Advisory Committees, with each province and territory represented.
  • Significant reforms to the role and structure of the Judicial Advisory Committees, aimed at enhancing the independence and transparency of the process, were announced on October 20, 2016.
  • The Judicial Advisory Committees in ten jurisdictions have been reconstituted. Most recently, Minister Wilson-Raybould announced the composition of three new Judicial Advisory Committees on April 13, 2017.
  • This process is separate from the Supreme Court of Canada judicial appointment process announced on August 2, 2016. Nominees to the Supreme Court of Canada are selected by the Prime Minister from a thoroughly vetted list of candidates.

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Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

Kathleen Davis

Communications and Parliamentary Affairs Advisor

Office of the Minister of Justice

613-992-4621

 

Media Relations

Department of Justice Canada

613-957-4207

media@justice.gc.ca


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