March InForum

March InForum: District Election Results, Second VP Nomination, and more!

Society News

2023 District Election Results

Four candidates from Halifax District and two candidates from Cape Breton District have been elected to serve on council. The results of the election are as follows.

Halifax District Election

The successful candidates were Desireé Jones-Matthias, Jane O’Neill KC, Robert Kennedy, and Terrance Sheppard KC. As Council members, the successful candidates will lead the Society and lend their voices and unique insights to decisions that impact Nova Scotia’s legal profession.

Voter turnout for this election was 48.12%, with 1034 of the total eligible 2149 voters casting their electronic ballot. The 2021 Halifax District Election had a voter turnout of 41.65%.

  • Desireé Jones-Matthias, 592 Votes, 23%
  • Jane O’Neill KC, 555 Votes, 21%
  • Robert Kennedy, 515 Votes, 20%
  • Terrance Sheppard KC, 487 Votes, 19%
  • D. Fraser MacFadyen, 479 Votes, 18%

Cape Breton District Election

The successful candidates were Shannon Mason and Jennifer MacDonald. As Council members, the successful candidates will lead the Society and lend their voices and unique insights to decisions that impact Nova Scotia’s legal profession.

Voter turnout for this election was 56.85%, with 112 of the total eligible 197 voters casting an electronic ballot.

  • Shannon Mason: 73 Votes, 44%
  • Jennifer C. MacDonald: 61 Votes, 37%
  • Andrea Rizzato: 33 Votes, 20%

Society Nominates Morgan Manzer as 2023-2024 Second Vice-President

The Nominating Committee has nominated Morgan Manzer as the Society’s Second Vice-President for the 2023-2024 Council year.

In making their nomination, the committee 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.

“Working with Morgan gives me great confidence in his ability as not only a lawyer, but as a governance-minded professional who I look forward to working with,” said Mark Scott KC, the Society’s First Vice-President. “Morgan’s unique insights and experience with the Society will give him ample professional experience to draw from as he takes on this new leadership role.”

Morgan Manzer (he/him) is a Staff Lawyer for Nova Scotia Legal Aid (NSLA) practicing child protection and family law. Morgan is presently finishing his Masters of Laws in Dispute Resolution with a focus on culture, equity, and power at Osgoode Hall Law School.

At the Society Morgan has served as a Council member since 2021 and also serves on the Racial Equity and Fitness to Practices committees. For the first half of 2020, Morgan was seconded to the Society’s Equity and Access Office to advise on equity and access issues affecting the legal profession.

Over the past several years, Morgan has also been a practice manager for the bar admission program (PREP). Within Nova Scotia Legal Aid Morgan is an active member of their equity and racial diversity Committee. In early 2021 Morgan concluded four and a half years as Chair of Halifax Pride’s board of directors. He also presently serves as Vice-Chair of the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia, and as a member of Global News’s DEI Advisory Committee.

In 2019, he was presented the Zöe Odei Young Lawyers Award from the Canadian Bar Association (CBA), Nova Scotia Branch, for his work within the 2SLGBTQIA+ community and he is a recent recipient of the Queen’s Jubilee Medal for his volunteerism in the areas of mental health and equity.

Nominations Open for Second Vice-President

The Second Vice-President holds a key position in governance and continues to become First Vice-President and then President of the Society.

Additional practising lawyers may be nominated for Second Vice-President until April 12, 2023, by:

  1. Completing the Nomination Form
  2. Submitting the completed Nomination Form to

Questions? Please contact the Society at

Nominations now open for 2023 Distinguished Service Award

The Society’s Distinguished Service Award (DSA), established in 1999, recognizes outstanding lawyers who have contributed significantly to their community, the legal profession and to the Society.

The 2022 DSA recipient was Shawna Paris-Hoyte KCReview the full list of recipients.

The DSA Committee reviews the nominations and makes a recommendation to Council based on these considerations:

  • Integrity: The recipient is of unimpeachably good character, with a reputation for the highest professional integrity.
  • Professional achievement: The recipient is amongst the leaders in the practice of law or the academic realm.
  • Service to the profession: The recipient has made long-term, exceptional volunteer contributions to elevate the legal profession through work with one or more of the following: The Society, the justice system, legal scholarship or otherwise.
  • Community service: The recipient is an outstanding contributor to the community, through volunteer service and a commitment to making the world a better place.
  • Reform: The recipient has made an outstanding contribution to the betterment of the law or the improvement of the justice system.
  • Overall: The recipient espouses the highest ideals of the legal profession and is a person to whom all members of the profession can look for inspiration.

Do you know an outstanding lawyer who fits the nomination criteria?

Nominate a lawyer by submitting a nomination form to by 4:00 PM on May 31, 2023.

Both members of the Society and members of the public may nominate a lawyer.

Questions? Please contact the Society’s Strategy & Engagement Advisor, Jane Willwerth, at

The Society’s Public Representatives are valued members of Council who bring their varied expertise and insight to the table and ensure that the public’s perspective is reflected in Council’s decision-making.  

We’re seeking one member of the public, who has a keen interest in contributing to Nova Scotia’s legal profession and to their community, to fill a vacant Public Representative seat on Council. We encourage members of equity-deserving groups to apply for this position as we aim to reflect Nova Scotia’s diverse population. 

Public Representatives have full voting rights on Council and sit on several Society Committees. The time commitment includes up to eight Council meetings per year, committee meetings and time spent reviewing necessary reading material.  

“On the Society’s Council I have gained a better understanding of the legal profession and the reality that lawyers in this province have the same vision as I do – a justice system which is better for all Nova Scotians. I have also learned a way of critical thinking that is different than my learned experience which has made me a more experienced social worker. I would encourage anyone who has the opportunity to get involved in the NSBS.” – Michelle Ward, Social Worker and Executive Director of Kids First Association. 

Are you interested in being considered for this appointment?

To be considered, submit an expression of interest, a skills matrix and brief resume (1 or 2 pages). In your expression of interest, please describe your background, interests, and experience, and indicate why you wish to serve on the Society’s Council as a Public Representative. 

Please note: Those who are not selected for the position will remain in a pool of interested candidates who may be asked to serve on the Society’s Committees when vacancies arise. 

Submit your expression of interest by 4:30 p.m. on April 4 to Jane Willwerth at

We value diversity on all our committees and welcome applications from all equity deserving groups

NSBS At-Large Council Nominations Open Until April 3

This is an announcement to members that April 3, 2023 is the deadline to submit a At-Large Council Member Nomination package. If you are interested in joining the Society’s Council, please submit the nomination package to
Here is an overview of the At-Large Election:

At Large Election
This second phase of the election is for three member-at-large Council positions following the District Elections.

Nominations are open from Monday, March 20 until Monday, April 3, with the election running from Friday, April 17 until Monday, April 24 if required. All lawyers and non-practising members in the province are eligible and may be nominated by submitting a Nomination Form – At Large Elections.

2023-2024 Council Meetings
Currently Council meetings take place in-person with a hybrid option, and a schedule of the upcoming meetings is posted. All new and returning Council members will also be expected to attend the Council Orientation scheduled in May and the Society’s Annual Meeting on June 17.

Learn more about the election & Council

If you have questions about the election process or require assistance, please email

Thank you for Attending the Inaugural AMIE Reception!

The Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society would like to thank everyone who attended the inaugural AMIE Reception to celebrate this year’s recipient, Josie McKinney.

More information about the award and Josie McKinney is available here.

March Council Meeting Documents

The Society’s Council met Friday, March 24, 2023, at 9:00 a.m.

The March Council Documents will be posted here once they are available.

Your Practice

Deadline Reminder: Trust Account Report and Accountant’s Report on Trust Account

Members are reminded that the Trust Account Report (Regulation 4.11.2) and Accountant’s Report on the Trust Account (Regulation 4.11.4) are both due March 31, 2023. The Society also advises members to review the changes that have been made to the Accountant’s Report.

We do not anticipate a material change in the amount of work involved in preparing the report, however we encourage all lawyers operating a trust account to contact their accountant to discuss any implications this change may have on the engagement.

If you have any questions regarding these changes, please contact

Lawyers’ Insurance Association of Nova Scotia

Lawyers' Insurance Association of Nova Scotia

News From the NS Courts

Changes in Category

In every issue of our newsletter InForum, we provide updates on category changes. These are the Changes in Category from February 23, 2023 to March 29, 2023.

These members have changed to Practising status:

  • Pamela J. Branton
  • John William MacDonald
  • Kristin Janice Pike

These members have changed to Non-Practising status:

  • Kyle Young Ereaux
  • Nicole Eveline Godbout
  • Vanessa Lynne Kinnear
  • Graham Stephen Thomas Lindfield
  • Kelsey Jordyn Lyn Webb

These individuals have resigned:

  • John Robert Bishop
  • Isha Dhawan
  • Ian S. MacKay
  • Michael Yvon Robichaud

This member has changed to Life Status

  • Joseph Albert Friel Macdonald, KC

In Memoriam

Our condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of:

Mr. Robin Wentworth Archibald, who passed away on February 8, 2023. He was called to the Nova Scotia Bar in 1975. After attending law school at the University of Toronto, he practised in British Columbia and Nova Scotia and worked in private practice and later for the Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Service.

Mr. John Edward MacDonell, who passed away on February 17, 2023. He was called to the Bar in 1995. After attending Dalhousie Law School. He practised in Halifax and worked as a part-time faculty member at Dalhousie and then began working in politics as Chief of Staff to the Honourable Peter MacKay amongst many other posts over the course of his career.

Mr. David John Bright KC, who passed away on March 1, 2023. He was called to the bar in 1972. He first practised at Claman, Dietrich, Clark, Bright & Clarke Barristers & Solicitors until joining BOYNECLARKE in 1981, where he worked until his retirement in 2019.

Mr. John Mroz, KC who passed away on March 4, 2023. He was called to the bar in 1966. He spent 23 years at Central Guarantee Trust in Halifax before working with Parson Investments until his retirement,

For Your Information


Thousands of Nova Scotians rely on the Legal Information Society of Nova Scotia’s Lawyer Referral Service to find the legal help they need.  If you are a lawyer in private practice, you should join.

Among its many benefits, the Lawyer Referral Service is:

  • a practice-building tool;
  • an invaluable legal information resource;
  • a great way to raise your professional profile;
  • a rewarding way to give back to your community;
  • free to join!

We need lawyers from all over the province to join the Lawyer Referral Service. To find out more or to sign up right now online go to

The Legal Information Society of Nova Scotia (or LISNS) is a public legal information and education charity. We’ve been providing Nova Scotians with easy to understand information and resources about the law since 1982.

Survey for Family Law Practitioners & Free Presentations on the Impact of Family Law Amendments in Nova Scotia

The Access to Justice & Law Reform Institute is seeking participation from family law practitioners in a brief survey as part of our research on addressing emergency situations in family court. Access the survey and more information here: 

The Access to Justice & Law Reform Institute has added additional dates for our free one-hour webinars for legal professionals on recent case law updates around family violence in the wake of amendments to the Divorce Act and Parenting and Support Act. This presentation has been made possible by Justice Canada.

The presentation will cover the following topics:

  • A brief overview of recent family law amendments and concordance between the Divorce Act and Parenting and Support Act 
  • Case law updates in Nova Scotia and beyond: How are the courts interpreting these changes? 
  • Evidence of family violence and the impact on children 
  • Further resources and community referrals

To register, please select your preferred date below or email indicating the date and time you wish to attend. Presentations will take place via Zoom on the following dates:

The Nova Scotia Health Research Ethics Board (NSH REB) is recruiting to fill the role of Legal Members on our virtual provincial board. The REB’s role is to review cutting-edge clinical research that involves human participants or their data and that takes place within Nova Scotia Health to ensure that the research respects and protects our research participants, patients and communities.

Legal members are persons knowledgeable in the relevant law (i.e. health, privacy) and cannot be part of NS Health legal counsel or risk manager.  They review Ethics Application Forms submitted to the board from a legal and ethical perspectives, ensuring that companies or investigators do not limit research participant liability or their rights. Their role is to ensure that the information provided to research participants is readable, correct, and understood. The NSH REB does not expect that legal members understand the science behind the studies; that is the responsibility of scientific and medical board members to simplify the research study so everyone on the board understands what is expected of the research participants.

WHEN:  Meetings are held once per month on Mondays from 4:00 – 6:00 pm 

WHERE:  Virtually through ZOOM. Links and materials sent through email.

INTERESTED? Want to learn more?  Please email:

Provincial Court of Nova Scotia Notice to the Profession: January 2023 to June 2023 Intake Date

Courtroom #6 Long Trial (Halifax) – Spring Garden Road

January 2023 to June 2023 Intake Dates

The January to June 2023 Intake Dates for Provincial Court matters in CR#6 are:

  • April 11, 25, 2023
  • May 9, 23, 2023
  • June 13, 2023


To qualify for dates in CR#6 a Provincial Court matter must require four days or more. All cases will be pre-trialed and time requirements will have to be justified.

CR#6 will continue to provide relief to CR#5 by hearing Youth Court matters requiring four (4) days or more. These longer youth cases will be sent to CR#6 on CR#6’s regular intake dates for docketing. Generally speaking, CR#5 will not be scheduling youth cases in the CR#6 docket.

The clerk for CR#6 (Hilary Rankeillor) can be reached at (902) 424-8772.

Call for Participants—Osgoode Hall Law School: Invitation to take user experience

Missing Wills

Name on will: Dana Lynn Campbell
Last known residence: Sydney River, Nova Scotia
Any lawyers with information please contact
 Kyle MacMullin at or (902) 564-4838

Name on will: Florentine Parent Erb
Last known residence: Montreal, Quebec
Any lawyers with information please contact
Mona Parent at or (418) 392-1646

Name on will: Robert Lorne Lawrence
Last known residence: Beaverbank, Nova Scotia
Any lawyers with information please contact
Catherine Lawrence at or (902) 890-1379

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