Tuma T. W. Young nominated as 2019-2020 Second Vice-President

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The Society's Governance and Nominating Committee (GNC) nominates Mi’kmaq lawyer Tuma T. W. Young as the Society’s Second Vice-President for the 2019-2020 Council year. Tuma is the first Mi’kmaq lawyer nominated to the Society’s Executive. 

In making its nomination, the GNC seeks integrity, respect for others, leadership and communication skills, strategic thinking and consensus building. The Society strives for diversity of leadership with respect to personal characteristics, area of practice and geographic location.

"I’m thrilled by the GNC’s selection of Tuma as the Society’s nominee for 2nd Vice-President," said President Frank E. DeMont QC. "We’ve worked together both on Council and committees. Tuma has an expansive legal knowledge and brings his engaging, often humorous, personality to Council. Throughout his eighteen years of practice, he’s advocated for access to legal services and has run a pro bono law clinic at Cape Breton University. His academic background and active commitment to the legal profession’s response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission will be a continued asset to Council and the Executive."

Tuma Young

Tuma T. W. Young grew up in a traditional manner on the Malagawatch First Nation. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Mi’kmaq Studies from the University College of Cape Breton; a Bachelor of Laws from the University of British Columbia; a Master of Laws in Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy from the University of Arizona; and is presently enrolled in the JSD program at the University of Arizona.

Tuma was called to the Bar in June 2001, becoming the first Mi’kmaq speaking lawyer in Nova Scotia. He was elected to Council as a Member At Large in 2015 and 2017 and is a member of the Code of Professional Conduct Committee, the Racial Equity Committee and the Truth & Reconciliation Commission Working Group.

Currently, he works as an Assistant Professor in Indigenous Studies/Political Science at Cape Breton University. Tuma’s primary research area is the analysis of L’nu worldview to see how traditional concepts of governance can be used in contemporary institution development. He also researches Two-Spiritedness (gay/ lesbian/ bisexual/ transgendered) and community-based health and social research. In August 2017, Tuma was qualified as an expert witness on L’nuk Laws and Decolonizing Perspectives as part of his testimony at the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

At CBU, Tuma has a pro bono law clinic for students, staff and community members where he provides free initial advice and, if necessary, referrals to outside lawyers. He also has a private Wills & Estates practice for a number of First Nations communities.

Tuma serves as co-Chair of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada’s TRC Calls to Action Advisory Committee, which is charged with developing a response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action #27 and #28.

Tuma spends his free time with his partner Nicolaas and working on his photography portfolio.

The Second Vice-President Nomination Process

The Second Vice-President holds a key position in governance and continues on to become First Vice-President and then President of the Society. Additional practising lawyers may be nominated for Second Vice-President until February 15th.

Learn more about the Second-Vice President nomination process here.