Designation of Queen's Counsel

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Government honours lawyers who have demonstrated exemplary service to the Canadian justice system through their work in the federal public service.

December 11, 2013  |  Ottawa  |  Department of Justice

Today, the Government of Canada recognized seven lawyers in the federal public service as Queen’s Counsel (QC). Formally styled “Her Majesty’s Counsel learned in the law,” the federal QC honours lawyers who demonstrate exemplary service to the Canadian justice system.

The individuals receiving this honour, also known as “taking silk,” are members of the federal public service who have demonstrated great skill in oral and written advocacy, acuity and learning in legal policy development, and wise counsel in service to the Canadian Crown.

The QCs are being conferred on the anniversary of the signing of the Statute of Westminster, which took place on December 11, 1931. The Statute of Westminster was ratified by the British Parliament and granted the Dominions greater legal and foreign policy autonomy.

“It is fitting that the honour of Queen’s Counsel is being bestowed on the anniversary of the signing of the Statute of Westminster and at the end of the diamond jubilee anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation,” said Peter MacKay, P.C. Q.C., Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada. “The people receiving this designation today have conducted themselves in the finest traditions of the legal profession, and the Government is pleased to recognize their exemplary service within the public service.”    

The individuals were designated as federal QCs by the Governor-in-Council, upon recommendation of the Minister of Justice with the assistance of a Department of Justice advisory committee chaired by the Deputy Minister of Justice. Individuals were identified and considered according to a number of factors, including the length of service as members in good standing of provincial bar associations, their contributions to the development of the law, and leadership in their professional and personal lives which has raised esteem for the legal profession.

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