Government of Canada announces judicial appointment in the province of Alberta

News release

March 15, 2018 – Ottawa, Ontario – Department of Justice Canada  

The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced the following appointment 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 Ritu Khullar, a justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta, is appointed a justice of the Court of Appeal of Alberta in Edmonton. She replaces Madam Justice S.J. Greckol, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective January 1, 2018.

Biography

Madam Justice Ritu Khullar was born in Fort Vermilion, Alberta, to parents who had immigrated from India. She spent her childhood in the small town of Morinville, Alberta, an experience that shaped her character. She earned an Honours B.A. from the University of Alberta and an LL.B. from the University of Toronto. Justice Khullar then clerked at the Alberta Court of Appeal and the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench before going into private practice. From 1998 until her appointment to the judiciary, she practised with Chivers Carpenter Lawyers, focusing on labour and employment, privacy, administrative, human rights, and constitutional law. She has appeared before numerous administrative tribunals and every level of court in Canada including the Supreme Court of Canada. She also served as managing partner of Chivers Carpenter for eight years. In March 2017, she was appointed a justice of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench in Edmonton.

Throughout her legal career, Justice Khullar lectured at the University of Alberta and served on numerous committees of the Canadian Bar Association. In addition, she was a member of the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for the province of Alberta in 2003, and more recently, she was the Chair of the Government of Alberta’s Advisory Panel on Coal Communities. She also acted pro bono in significant cases, including representing LEAF (Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund) before the Supreme Court of Canada.

Excerpts from Madam Justice Khullar’s judicial application can be accessed at the following link.

Quick Facts

  • 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. 
  • The Government of Canada is committed to promoting access to justice for all Canadians. To improve outcomes for Canadian families, Budget 2018 proposes $77.2 million over four years to support the expansion of unified family courts, beginning in 2019-2020. This investment in the family justice system will create 39 new judicial positions in Alberta, Ontario, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • In addition, Budget 2018 proposes funding for a further seven judicial positions in Saskatchewan and Ontario, at a cost of $17.1 million over five years.
  • The funding outlined in Budget 2018 comes on top of resources allocated under Budget 2017, which created 28 new judicial positions across the country.
  • Additionally, the Government will ensure that a robust process remains in place to allow Canadians to voice their concerns and submit complaints about judicial conduct to the Canadian Judicial Council and the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs. This investment of $6 million over two years, beginning in 2018-2019, will support the judicial discipline process through which allegations of judicial misconduct are investigated.
  • 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. 

Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

David Taylor
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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