Annual Report 2011/2012

  • July 31, 2012

Submitted by Susan MacFarlane

Summary of Activities

Number of Meetings Held: 6

October 20, 2011
Guest Speaker: Lisa Peters
Ms. Peters spoke about recent legal research projects of the Uniform Law Conference of Canada, and how to access research materials available at the website. Several new articled students were especially invited and attended using privilege passes.

November 29, 2011
Guest Speakers: Holly Brinton and Mr. Justice David Frankel
The meeting was a joint meeting of the Legal Research section and the Appellate Advocacy section. The speakers discussed factum writing.

January 25, 2012
Guest Speakers: Kevin Zakreski and Emma Butt
Mr. Zakreski of the BC Law Institute and Ms. Butt of the Canadian Centre for Elder Law each spoke about their organization's role in law reform: recent initiatives in law reform and history of law reform in their area.

February 22, 2012
Guest Speakers: A panel of three speakers (Carol Whittome, Do-Ellen Hansen and Karen Leung).
The panel members each spoke about teaching legal research to a different audience (clients, law students, and junior lawyers).

April 24, 2012
Guest Speaker: Meghan Maddigan
Ms. Maddigan of the Courthouse Library gave a live demonstration of online and desktop legal research resources in the Courthouse Library boardroom. Several attendees used privilege passes, showing that the meeting drew from a wider than usual audience.

May 30, 2012
Guest Speaker: Robin Elliot
Update on Federalism. A joint meeting of the Legal Research and Constitutional/Civil Liberties (Vancouver) sections. Also Legal Research section elections, where secretary Carol Whittome and treasurer Do-Ellen Hansen were each acclaimed for another term, Johanne Blenkin was acclaimed as legislative liaison for her first term, and chair Heather Cane was acclaimed for her first term.

Reports and Resolutions

None, aside from ordinary business of reporting to section members on Provincial Council activity or legislative updates, and approving business at the election.

Notably the newly elected chair (elected in May 2012), who was elected for a one-year term, had had to step down shortly after the election. It is expected that the executive will canvass other candidates and give notice to the membership calling for nominations for a byelection for the position of chair sometime in the new 2012-2013 section year.

Comments and Observations of the Chair

This past year was another active year. We provided value to our members in providing six meetings on diverse topics: some practical, some theoretical, some writing-based, and some reform-based. We had two joint meetings with other sections, which showcases our section to CBA members who might not otherwise be aware of what we do and also offers our members a glimpse of what other sections are doing. We also had meetings at a range of different locations (all obtained free to the section) this past year in an effort to cater to different needs and find a suitable fit. Locations we used included Lawson Lundell's boardroom, Bordern Ladner Gervais's boardroom, the Courthouse Library, and the Law Foundation boardroom. We also made special efforts at two of our meetings to invite non-section members to attend via privilege passes: at the October 2011 meeting we especially invited articled students, and at the April 24 meeting we especially invited legal researchers from outside the section. Overall the response was positive and several members said they were pleased with the variety and activity of the section in the past year.