Government of Canada announces judicial appointments in the province of Saskatchewan
February 22, 2018 – 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.
Heather MacMillan-Brown, Q.C., a partner with Miller Thomson, is appointed a judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan in Saskatoon. She replaces Madam Justice M.L. Dovell, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective December 31, 2016.
Meghan McCreary, Q.C., a partner with MLT Aikins, is appointed a judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan in Regina. She replaces Mr. Justice R.W. Elson, whom the Chief Justice has transferred to Saskatoon to fill the vacancy created when Mr. Justice M. Acton elected to become a supernumerary judge effective December 1, 2017.
Madam Justice Heather MacMillan-Brown obtained her law degree from the University of Saskatchewan in 1996. She clerked for Chief Justice D.K. MacPherson at the Court of Queen’s Bench of Saskatchewan. She practised with Miller Thomson (formerly Balfour Moss) from 1997, becoming a partner of the firm in 2004.
Justice MacMillan-Brown practised as a litigator for her entire career, focusing in more recent years on the area of professional discipline and regulation. In recognition of her expertise, Justice MacMillan-Brown was appointed Queen’s Counsel for Saskatchewan in 2012 and was recognized for her litigation skills by Benchmark Canada and Best Lawyers in Canada.
Justice MacMillan-Brown has been extensively involved in the Canadian Bar Association throughout her career, including serving as president of the CBA Saskatchewan Branch in 2012-13. Outside of her legal volunteerism, she has been involved in her community as the campaign chair for the United Way Saskatoon’s Community Campaign in 2016 and 2017 and as a member of the Board of Directors for Autism Services Saskatoon.
Excerpts from Justice MacMillan-Brown’s judicial application will be available shortly.
Prior to her appointment, Madam Justice Meghan McCreary was a partner with MLT Aikins LLP in Regina, practising in the areas of labour, employment, workplace human rights and administrative law.
Justice McCreary obtained a B.A. (Hons) from the University of Saskatchewan in 1995 and her law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in 1998. During law school, she participated in Osgoode Hall’s Intensive Programme in Poverty Law at Parkdale Community Legal Services, which instilled in her a commitment to working for community and social justice. Some of her published work from that program continues to provide guidance to the field. Thereafter, Justice McCreary clerked for the Chief Justice of Saskatchewan. Called to the bars of Saskatchewan and British Columbia, she has worked in private practice in both provinces. In 2005, she joined MLT Aikins LLP (as the firm is now known).
During her career, Justice McCreary was recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada (labour and employment), named one of Canada’s leading lawyers in The Canadian Lexpert Legal Directory (employment law and workplace human rights), and appointed Queen's Counsel for Saskatchewan in 2017. She acted as an executive board member of the Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers and frequently gave presentations on labour relations, employment and human rights issues to lawyers and laypeople at conferences and seminars.
Throughout her life, Justice McCreary has been dedicated to contributing to her community. At the time of her appointment, she was chair of the Saskatchewan Arts Board. She previously served as chair of the Globe Theatre Society, as a trustee of the Saskatchewan Pension Plan, and as a director of the Regina and District Food Bank. She and her husband live in Regina with their young son.
Excerpts from Justice McCreary’s judicial application will be available shortly.
In 2017, the Minister of Justice made 100 appointments and elevations – the most a Minister of Justice has made in one year in at least two decades.
Of these appointees, half are women, four are Indigenous, and 16 have self-identified as a member of a visible minority population, LGBTQ2, or a person with a disability.
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 have been 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. Sixteen Judicial Advisory Committees have been reconstituted to date.
For more information, media may contact:
Office of the Minister of Justice
Department of Justice Canada
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