Council Election FAQs

General

What is Council’s role?

As the Society’s governing body, Council ensures we carry out our purpose to uphold and protect the public interest in the practice of law. Council sets the Society’s strategic direction, makes policy decisions, strives for excellence in regulation and ensures the Society acts in the public interest. Council members lead the Society and lend their voices and unique insights to decisions that impact Nova Scotia’s legal profession.

How many members are on Council?

Council includes 21 voting members who are elected lawyers from across the province, as well as five appointed public representatives.

What is the time commitment for a Council member?

Council meets eight times per year to discuss and address the policy issues affecting the Society. These meetings typically take place starting at 9:00 AM at the Society’s office in downtown Halifax, however, during the COVID-19 pandemic meetings are held virtually via Zoom. Council members are expected to be prepared to attend full-day meetings, with sufficient breaks throughout the day.

How can I learn more about a Council member’s role and responsibilities?

Join the Society’s Executive Committee February 3, 2021, from 4:30-5:30 PM for a virtual information session to learn more about the role and responsibilities of a Council member. Register for this session.

If your question isn’t answered in these FAQs, please contact us at elections@nsbs.org or complete our Council Election question form.

What do I get out of being a member of Council?

Council is an opportunity to serve the public and to contribute to Nova Scotia’s legal profession. Council members lend their voices and unique insights to set the Society’s strategic direction. On Council, you’ll also connect with lawyers across the province and develop skills and knowledge including governance, policy-making and risk analysis skills.

Join the Society’s Executive Committee February 3, 2021, from 4:30-5:30 PM  learn more. Register for this session.

District Election

Who is eligible to be nominated?

Practising members from Nova Scotia are eligible to be nominated in their corresponding district. A member’s district corresponds to their current mailing address on file at the Society.

How can I be nominated?

Complete the Society’s District nomination form on or before Monday, February 15, 2021 and send it to the Executive Director at elections@nsbs.org.

Please also complete and include your candidate biography form and a colour or black and white head & shoulders photo with your submission. High-resolution electronic photographs are preferable, in JPG or PNG format (please ensure that your digital photo is at least 215 pixels wide by 300 pixels high before cropping).

Please note that District Election nominations are not accepted until January 28, 2021.

How many members are elected?

Ten District Council members will be elected across the province – two each in Cape Breton, Central, and Southwestern Districts, and four from the Halifax District. Review Regulation 2.3.1.

Who is eligible to vote?

Practising lawyers in each district are eligible to vote for candidates in their own districts.

What are the different districts?

There are four districts. The Cape Breton District, Central District, HRM and the Southwestern District. Review the District map.

Member At Large Election

Who is eligible to be nominated?

Non-practising and practising members from anywhere in the province are eligible to be nominated for the member at large. Review Regulation 2.3.1 (e).

How can I be nominated?

Complete the Society’s Member At Large nomination form on or before Monday, April 5, 2021 and send it to the Executive Director at elections@nsbs.org.

Please also complete and include your candidate biography form and a colour or black and white head & shoulders photo with your submission. High-resolution electronic photographs are preferable, in JPG or PNG format (please ensure that your digital photo is at least 215 pixels wide by 300 pixels high before cropping).

Please note that nominations are not accepted for the member at large positions until March 15, 2021.

Who is eligible to vote?

All members are eligible to vote for candidates in the member at large election.

What is the difference between the member at large positions and district member positions?

The district members are elected based on their specific district. The member at large positions are elected from anywhere in the province and are not based on a specific district. All Council members contribute to developing the Society’s strategic framework and lend their voices and unique insights to decisions that impact Nova Scotia’s legal profession.

This two-phase election arose from recommendations of the Task Force on Council Composition (2009) that a smaller Council may mean less diversity of backgrounds, views and experience around the Council table. The Task Force specifically wanted to ensure that Council membership reflected:

  • experience in the particular areas of focus in Council’s Strategic Goals and Objectives;
  • gender or sexual orientation;
  • geographic representation;
  • race;
  • practice area (e.g., corporate, litigation, property, family, etc.);
  • practice venue (e.g., private firm, government, legal aid, etc.);
  • other areas of potential under-representation that may be identified.

Diversity of representation on Council is a key priority as we want to ensure our governing body reflects Nova Scotia’s legal profession as we work towards our 2019-2022 Strategic Goal of ensuring that Nova Scotians are served by a legal profession that is diverse, inclusive and culturally competent.

Voting

When can I vote?

District election voting is open March 1-March 15, 2021. Member at large voting is open April 19-April 26, 2021. You will be able to vote using our online platform eBallot anytime during the specific voting period.

How can I vote?

You will receive your unique voting credentials (username and password) from eBallot via your preferred email address on file with the Society.

To vote in the 2021 Council Election, follow these steps:

  • Visit the voting site directly, or use the link found in the email from eBallot.
  • Log in using your provided credentials.
  • Electronically mark the ballot next to the names of candidates of your choice.
  • Follow the instructions on the page to submit your votes.

What should I do if I do not receive my voting credentials?

If you did not receive a copy of the email with your login credentials, please check your Junk/Spam folder on your email account. If you still cannot locate your voting credentials please contact elections@nsbs.org

Are votes confidential?

This election system, eBallot, which we have used in past elections, keeps votes completely confidential. The Society cannot find out who votes for whom and only know who has voted.

Who wins the election?

Candidates are elected by the total number of votes received. eBallot tallies the votes.

Questions?

If your question isn’t answered in these FAQs, please contact us at elections@nsbs.org or complete our question submission form.

2021 Council Election Question Submission Form

  • Please provide your email address so we can contact you with a response to your question.