The requirements of social distancing have accelerated the use of technology as an alternative to holding in-person hearings.  Learn practical tips for setting up and conducting a hearing using video conferencing.  The virtual hearing will likely develop into one of the procedural alternatives at the disposal of an administrative decision-maker.   Having the flexibility and confidence to hold virtual hearings will give tribunals another way to offer a cost-effective and timely resolution of disputes. Participants will receive resource materials.

Our Presenters:

Presented by Adrian Wright and Carol Zukiwski

National Indigenous Peoples Day is a day for all Canadians to recongnize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples.  The Canadain Constitution recognizes these three groups as Aboriginal peoples, also know as indigenous peoples.

In honour of National Indigenous Peoples Day, take part in one of the many events happening online, check out some reading lists or visit a museum virtually!

You can also watch the recording of our June Lunchen Webinar linked below.

Watch Ry Moran, Director of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation discuss the important work of this organization.


Below you will find the recorded webinar from May 12, 2020.

Med-Arb is a distinct, innovative standalone process that is not as well known or understood by consumers of ADR services compared to mediation and arbitration.

Med-Arb is not merely the merging of separate mediation and arbitration processes, but a unique process designed to meet the needs of particular disputants. It involves nuances and complexities that can be fine-tuned to the needs of the parties as a customized dispute resolution process, which requires a high level of practitioner competence to do successfully.

As part of ADRIC’s roles of protecting the public and promoting best practices in ADR, the need for a designation certifying competence, experience and skills specifically in Med-Arb has been determined to be extremely important, especially as the use of Med-Arb is expanding in many areas of substantive disputes.

The ADRIC Med-Arb designation is unique in the ADR world and provides clearly defined criteria for those practitioners who wish to obtain it. This in turn provides users of ADR services with confidence that they can rely on the specific and specialized knowledge and experience of individuals with the designation.

By designing and implementing this designation in consultation with experienced ADR practitioners and by imposing strict requirements for members who wish to apply for the designation, ADRIC is confirming its commitment to the public and to its members as the premier ADR organization and thought leader in Canada.

Learn about the Med-Arb process and the rules surrounding this new designation.


Recording: A Story of Heroism & Survival
On April 14, 2020 we hosted a webinar along with the FOAJ called A Story of Heroism & Survival with Marnie Bondar and Ilana Krygier Lapides.
View the recording below. Scroll down to read the Speaker’s bios.
Marnie Bondar
As the granddaughter of four Holocaust survivors, Marnie Bondar grew up well-fed on chicken soup and extraordinary stories of survival and heroism.  A tight bond with her grandmother, Freda Plucer, remained until Freda’s death in January 2020 and the two shared a lifelong commitment to standing up to intolerance and discrimination. While Freda can no longer personally share her experiences from the Holocaust, including life in the ghetto and in the Auschwitz concentration camp, Marnie considers it an incredible honour to bring her grandmother’s history to today’s generation.  Marnie is a regular volunteer for Calgary Jewish Federation, Second Voices Project, which is a series of videos brought into schools by 2nd & 3rd Generations of Holocaust Survivors.  With help from a generous grant from the Alberta Human Rights Commission, the Project has created multi-media addresses whereby children and grandchildren bring their parents’ or grandparents’ Survivor testimony to life in classrooms.  Students learn the history of the Holocaust through a Survivor’s story while absorbing valuable lessons about Human Rights, tolerance and the dangers of hatred.  Marnie has spoken to thousands of students across Alberta for the last 5 years.

Ilana Krygier Lapides

Ilana Krygier Lapides is a born and raised Calgarian and a proud first-generation Canadian. She is the granddaughter of 4 Holocaust Survivors and her father, of blessed memory, was a child Survivor during the war.  Ilana has had the honour to serve many organizations in the Jewish community, most notably the CJA Jewish Day School as a Yiddish and Pre-school teacher, the Calgary JCC as the Adult/Teen Director, and she was the Principal of Temple’s Shabbat school. Her volunteer work includes sitting on the executive of various Boards and serving many lunches at the Drop-In Centre. 

For the past 13 years, Ilana has been the Holocaust and Human Rights Educator for Calgary Jewish Federation – coordinating and educating tens of thousands of students through school education, Survivor visits, commemoration ceremonies, and the Federation flagship program, our Holocaust Education Symposium in cooperation with Mount Royal University which is celebrating its 36th year in spring of 2021.  Most recently, Ilana helped institute Canada’s first city-wide Holocaust Remembrance Day with Calgary City Council. 

Ilana lives with her husband, David, and has three children and a very large dog. Ilana is currently attending Rabbinic school with the Jewish Studies Learning Institute out of New York, and will become an ordained Rabbi in June 2021. 

On April 14, 2020 we hosted a webinar along with the FOAJ called A Story of Heroism & Survival with Marnie Bondar and Ilana Krygier Lapides.

View the recording below. Scroll down to read the Speaker’s bios.

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays from the Foundation of Administrative Justice!

As the holiday season is upon us, we find ourselves reflecting on the past year with gratitude for those who have contributed to making it such a great one. We appreciate working with you and hope that the holidays and the coming year will bring you all the happiness and success!

Holiday Hours
Our offices will be closed from December 24th at noon until January 2nd, 2020. See you in the New Year!

Instructors Professional Development Day
In November our instructors spent 1.5 days learning at our Professional Development Day! One of the main focuses was incorporating adult learning principles into the classroom and curriculum. It was a great time all around, and we can’t wait to put what we learned into action!

Plain Language E-Book
An introductory guide to Plain Language: Building Results is now available online! This course has 50 courses across Canada, with close to 900 learners attending (from over 161 unique organizations)! Who benefits from plain language? Your readers do. And so do you. Every time you write a plain language document, you’re telling readers that you care about their time and their rights—and about them. Learn more here!

On behalf of our team here at the Foundation of Administrative Justice, we hope your holidays are filled with love, hope and joy!

As the Leaves Turn – Fall at FOAJ

“And all at once, summer collapsed into fall.” -Oscar Wilde

The busy summer months have translated into a busy fall, and all of a sudden, it’s October!  Some things that are currently on our radar this fall:

New to the Certificate in Tribunal Administrative Justice™ (CTAJ™) Program:

 The Cultural Competencies Workshop qualifies for 7 CTAJ™ credits!. Cultural Competencies is a one day workshop that is designed to engage participants in intermediate to advanced discussions about a topic of national importance to tribunals and decision makers. 

Canadians are diverse in their racial, ethnic, religious and linguistic backgrounds, representing over 200 ethnic groups. A tribunal’s success is influenced by its ability to work effectively in this environment.  In 2015 the Truth and Reconciliation Commission issued calls to action for governments and educators which encourages training in cultural diversity, particularly about Aboriginal culture. Decision makers and staff need the appropriate skills and tools to be proactive.

To learn more about the workshop, click here 

New CTAJ™ Investigator Stream!

As you may or may not know, FOAJ offers a Certificate program: Certificate in Tribunal Administrative Justice™ (CTAJ™)!  A first in Canada, this Certificate assists tribunals and participants to evaluate and support competencies in administrative justice roles.

Previously, there were 3 streams to the Certificate:

  1. Tribunal Member (for the appointed or elected board members and decision makers)
  2. Administrator (for staff and other support personnel)
  3. Advocate (for clients, presenters and counsel)

And now, we’re excited to announce the 4th stream:

  1. Investigator (for those locating evidence for decision making)

In this stream, the required course is the Investigations Course. The focus is on the investigator’s preparation, skills, information gathering, report writing and fairness. We will work through all the steps of an investigation. Topics will include the terms of reference or jurisdiction of the investigator, the requirement for fair process, the investigation plan, the objective standard, interviewing witnesses and gathering documents, the impact of personal observation, making factual findings, writing reports, making recommendations or decisions, and use of the report in other proceedings. Course Outcomes: 

  • an understanding of the required elements of fairness
  • an appreciation of the investigator, advocate, complainant, respondent, and witnesses
  • a practical approach to planning an investigation
  • experience in questioning and seeking information
  • tips to link the fact finding to the terms of reference or jurisdiction
  • three tips to improve their report writing
  • practical tips to build skills and best practices in investigations
  • confidence in their roles, and
  • a self-learning plan

As a result, you will develop practical tips to build skills and best practices in investigations, confidence in your role, and more! Learn more about the course here.

eLearning Courses Launching this Fall

E-Learning is a great way to pursue professional development while still keeping up with your responsibilities at work.  No travel time or expenses. Materials can be accessed anytime day or night to fit your schedule, lifestyle and work demands.  It allows you to complete one module or several in one sitting. You are able to manage your time and your training.

We have two eLearning courses in the works to launch this fall: 

  • Principles of Administrative Justice
  • Plain Language: Building Results

To see what eLearning courses FOAJ currently offers, check this link

2020 Course Calendar

The course calendar is available on our website, click here to view

Bursary Award

FOAJ created the Bursary in recognition of its benefactor, David Elliott, to recognize his spirited passion and commitment to excellence in justice, and his belief that there are no barriers to furthering one’s learning.

This Bursary is an annual $1,500 award open to anyone pursuing secondary or furthered learning in legal studies. Preference will be given to individuals that are:

  • a member in good standing with the Foundation
  • an employee or board member of an organization that is a member in good standing with the Foundation
  • in need of financial assistance in order to obtain or continue education
  • registered to attend one or more of the Foundation of Administrative Justice courses or other training related to administrative justice provided by a recognized secondary educational institute.

The application is due on December 1st, 2019. Click here to learn more about the award!

We know autumn will pass just as quickly as the summer months did. We’re sure not looking forward to the colder weather, but our hearts will stay warm spending extra time with family and friends as the holidays approach. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Board Member Feature: Christine Bernard

Title: BA, LLB

Favourite quote: Oh my gosh, I don’t think I have one! *laughs*

When did you start working with FOAJ?

In April of this year. It’s been going well, absolutely!

Can you tell me a little bit about your story getting to where you are now? I.e. where you went to school, where you grew up, etc.

I grew up in Alberta in a farming community called Legal. It’s a small French town, north of Morinville. My dad is a French Canadian from Alberta and my mom is an Acadian from New Brunswick. We grew up there, spending quite a bit of time on the east coast, because my mom’s family is there. It became pretty apparent that I wasn’t destined for farm life. My brothers are still at the farm, but I ran away as soon as I could *laughs*. I moved to Edmonton, went to Campus Saint-Jean at the University of Alberta, and did a degree there. I took a year off while doing my degree to live in Paris. I was very fortunate–I worked as an au pair–but I lucked out with the family because they worked for the government and they set me up with my own apartment. It was really the best of all worlds. I got to travel quite a bit in France and Spain while I was there. I did that for a year, came back, and in typical young student fashion needed to make money and applied for a job at a law firm. It all started when I was a secretary there, and found it really interesting. They pushed me to pursue studies in law. I had done all my schooling in French and continued to do so at the Université de Moncton. I obtained my law degree there in 2004.

Why did you pursue a career in administrative justice?

I was a litigation lawyer for almost 10 years. I was in private practice – personal injury and insurance defence primarily. Like many female lawyers, once you have kids, that becomes a little incompatible with family life. I then switched to government practice. Shortly after that, I became the Registrar of the Financial and Consumer Services Tribunal. That’s a position where I’m a lawyer to my tribunal members, and help them run the hearings, interact with the public and the parties, and whatnot. When I was appointed to this position, I said “That’s all good and fine, but I’ve never practiced administrative law so I need some training–and pretty quickly!” and that’s how I became involved with the Foundation of Administrative Justice. It was a crash course in administrative law! *laughs* That would’ve been about 5 years ago, and since then, basically any course that I can get my hands on I will take. My tribunal, when I came into my role back in 2014, was only 6 months old. It was a brand, brand new tribunal. It’s been really interesting to build this thing from the ground up. As I got more experienced and comfortable in my job, I was looking to get more involved with FOAJ and other national organizations. It seemed like a natural progression to become involved with a board or something similar. 

What are some common misconceptions about the industry?

Well, it depends on who you’re talking to. I think If you’re talking to self-represented parties, they may feel that it’s too much like a court. Some of them find it very daunting. It’s a tribunal’s job to explain the process and make it as easy as possible for them. Especially if they’re before my tribunal, they’ve already been through a rough spell– they’ve probably lost their job, they may have lost a home–and emotions are running high. It’s my job to facilitate the process for them so that they can concentrate on the real issues. I’ve had people tell me after they’ve gone through the whole process with us, “Thank you so much for your assistance with the procedure. It made it easier for me to tell the tribunal members what my story was.” For me, it’s all about access to justice, for each individual, regardless of whether they’re wrong or right, to feel they had their day in court and were able to access justice in a meaningful way. That’s the role administrative law should play, if it’s done properly. 

The other thing I’m passionate about, that ties in with the FOAJ mandate, is that I’m a big believer that tribunals need to do more to be fair. And that there’s nothing to be gained from being unfair. Even if it takes more steps and a little more time, everyone will see that justice has been done. Of course as lawyers, the experience is a little different. They want and need a court-like setting, and they won’t necessarily get that. We run a little more informally, but we tried to make it so that the process works for everyone and everyone feels that they were heard. 

What has been your favourite part so far?

I think It’s been learning about their current initiative. That’s what I find exciting, is to see that they’re trying to broaden their horizons and  broaden their scope to reach more administrative tribunals and more people in the administrative law community. It jives with my personal vision–education, education, education, you can’t have enough of it–and that’s one of the reasons I became a board member of FOAJ: to see it expand across Canada. I’m in Atlantic Canada and we have very little training here.

What are the values that drive you?

Definitely integrity, fairness, and loyalty. 

Your favourite books/podcasts/movies, etc?

My favourite movie is American Beauty, or Life as a House. Favourite book, basically anything by Daniel Silva that I can get my hands on. I like political thrillers! Other than that, I don’t listen to podcasts. I’m old school! I am currently reading Michelle Obama’s book, Becoming. It’s really inspiring, she’s a class act. I read an incredible amount, probably one book a week! It’s my escape. 

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

I like to golf–I’m an avid golfer. I like to garden, I like to read, and I spend time with my family. I’ve got two little girls that are seven and ten. They are very active kids, so we’re often biking, swimming, and doing a lot of sporting activities as a family.

Is this a role you would have envisioned yourself in 10 years ago?

No, because 10 years ago I was a litigator *laughs*, so definitely not. Even 3 years ago, it probably wasn’t on my radar yet. 

Who was your role model growing up?

Probably my dad. My dad has no formal education and is probably one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. He instilled in me the values of hard work, integrity, honesty, and to do things right the first time; put in the effort and you’ll see results. He was a very successful business person through sheer depth and strength of character. Like I said, no formal education – he didn’t have that type of background. I have two brothers, and he really Instilled in us that work ethic, drive, and those values. 

What skill would you love to learn, in work or in general?

I’d like to become proficient, again, at playing piano. I was a piano player, but that kind of went on the back burner with the kids. I’m starting to pick it up again! 

What’s the most fulfilling part of your job?

I think probably the most fulfilling job is helping parties understand the process and ensuring that we run their hearing. 

What’s your hidden talent?

I’m an avid cook, and aspire to be somewhat of a chef, not many people know that! That would be something that I aspire to be.


Board Member Feature: Yacub Adam

Name: Yacub Adam

Roles/Titles: Board Member at FOAJ, Professor of Political Science, Vice Chair of the Human Rights Commission in Yellowknife and currently a political consultant.

Favourite Quote:
There are so many to pick from. There are of course the usual serious, profound, uplifting and well trodden ones. So, I tend to like the less known and perhaps slightly irreverent ones. The slightly off the wall ones if you like. There Winston Churchill clearly had the edge. As a political scientist this is one of my favourites, for its directness and perhaps some underlying truth:

“Diplomacy is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way they ask for directions.”

On a more serious note, one of my favourite quotes is from Tariq ibn Ziyad, a Muslim General who led the conquest of Spain. It comes from the Quran. He says:

“I shall not worship what you worship, you do not worship what I worship. I am not a worshipper of what you have worshipped, and you are not a worshipper or what I have worshipped. To you, your religion, to me, my religion.”

It underlines tolerance and it says – Look, I am not here to interfere in your life, in your beliefs, in your work, and I don’t expect you to do that in mine. There’s a sense of ‘we can live together’. I consider the period of Islamic Spain at that time as one of the first multicultural societies.

When did you start working with FOAJ?
I’ve just been appointed in the last 4-5 months. In fact, I haven’t been to my first meeting yet! Can you tell me a little but about your story getting to where you are now? I grew up in Malawi in Central Africa. I went to boarding school there at a very young age, and then I went on to the UK for school and then university. I lived there, and my first teaching appointment at university was there, at the University of Edinburgh. Then, I went to West Africa for almost 15 years and taught politics there. My specialization is in African politics but I taught many other fields of politics. Then I went back to Britain and taught at the University of Glasgow before coming to Canada.

Coming to Canada in some sense is a bit of serendipity. I’ve always wanted to live a decade of my life on each continent. For a while I assumed I might be able to do that, but I’d forgotten that when you have children it’s much harder to do. I ended up thinking I might be in Yellowknife for a couple of years and ended up being here a good part of 20 now.

How did you get involved with the administrative justice field?
Quite honestly, I didn’t even know about FOAJ. When I was appointed as a member and then Vice Chair of the Human Rights Commission we started doing some courses through FOAJ. I found them extremely enlightening and it underlined many of the things I believed and cared about. Then, I was appointed to sit on the board.

What are some common misconceptions about the industry?
I’m not an expert on all of this, but I assume that like all over the world, I think when something is to do with the legal or quasi-legal side of something, people often assume the processes are complicated, bureaucratic and too legalistic to navigate simply. People tend to be intimidated by that, so they assume that it’s not something they can deal with easily, and often refrain from dealing with it entirely so public education and training like FOAJ does is of enormous value.

How could you combat that misconception?
I suppose, general education. But I also think partnerships with organizations, like Human Rights, etc, that help people to be educated about their rights and educated about how they can achieve those rights when those rights are trampled. Basically, opening doors in terms of information. Education is one of the greatest avenues in terms of enlightening and training people. Education is one of the biggest means by which this kind of outreach can be accomplished.

What’s been your favourite part so far, working with FOAJ?
I haven’t done anything with them yet, but they’ve been exceptionally sweet and kind and generous in terms of helping me out and setting up my first meeting. So I’m not sure yet! So I would argue that so far perhaps this my favourite part, talking to you!

What are the values that drive you?
I’ve always believed in fairness and justice for all, so my interest in FOAJ and human rights is based on that. I do care about how people are treated in all aspects of life. I tend to stand up for the underdog. In some senses it’s fighting for something that’s just, fair, that makes a better world, that makes people generally happier in some senses, and not trodden down, not bullied, not intimidated, not pushed into the back alley as it were. So, I would argue that it’s fighting for all of those things in an honest and open way.

Your top three favourite books/movies?
Wow. Hard! I read a lot, and a lot of academic stuff as well. There are so many! I’m currently re- reading a book by Erna Paris called The End of Days. It’s about the North African invasion of Spain. It deals with the flow of a new culture and religion coming in. The conflict and the contest that took place. It’s a great book to read with a great deal of history and dynamics at play and many lessons for today’s world.

I’m also re-reading Arguably by Christopher Hitchens. He was a British author who was very provocative, but not in a senseless way. He took up important issues and analyzed them. He was very
critical, very honest, and often saw through all the triteness that one finds sometimes when you try to deal with current issues. His essays are always great fun to read, extremely provocative and make you think a great deal, above all he is honest and direct, traits I admire.

For movies, I like stupid movies or very serious movies. So why very stupid movies? Well, I don’t like being emotionally, or in any other way, manipulated. I don’t like movies that are not credible, so I don’t really enjoy movies that are scary or movies that create fiction that I find hard to believe. So I like really silly movies where you can sit back, blank your mind, just relax and enjoy your popcorn!

What do you like to do when you’re not working?
Read, listen to music, catch up on what’s happening in the world. Physically, I like to play golf, I enjoy just being out on the golf course to blank my mind a little bit. I enjoy gardening, again, for the same reason. When that’s not possible, having long, lazy meals with my family and friends. It’s always fun to share food and beverage, break bread with family and friends. It’s a time when you commune, you talk, you discuss, you argue, do whatever you normally do as a family. That’s something I treasure and enjoy.

What three words describe you best?
A tricky one this, but I suppose I’m enthusiastic about things I care about. I give it my all. I can be serious sometimes – but I do believe I have a robust sense of humour, that doesn’t make me too difficult to spend time with. I like to laugh, joke, poke fun! Above all, I am curious about everything: people, where they come from, what they eat, what they do, what’s their history, what’s their life about? I learn a great deal from that. If you’re not curious, you don’t learn.

Is this a role you would have envisioned yourself in 10 years ago?
No, not really, to be honest. I didn’t even know FOAJ existed then. But, I have always served on boards and agencies for a very long, long time, so in some senses yes. This is something that caught my imagination. I felt they did things that I value and care about.

Who was your role model growing up?
I would argue, and this is something I’ve told my children, that perhaps the best role models I ever had were my parents. I went to boarding school very early on, so the lessons they had to teach me came very early in my life. They taught me strength: be strong, don’t be pushed around. Have self-respect: for what you value, what you care about, and who you are. And have dignity, behave with dignity. They taught me to fight for fairness, to fight for justice. In terms of general principles, these are the values I’ve lived by all my life. They came from my parents by and large, either through explicit instruction or through their own behaviour.

What skill would you love to learn, work-related or in general?
My wife would say, and perhaps I would agree with her, that I need to be better at new technology. I’m a bit of a dinosaur when it comes to doing this, that, and the other, on computers and phones, the apps, the various other things you do, so probably to be better at that. But, quite frankly, I don’t think I would enjoy the process. I know that’s a contradiction in some ways. I’m very curious, but when it comes to these things I’m not very curious. I just want them to work and that’s all I care about, so, perhaps in that sense, I may remain a dinosaur. But yes, I would probably benefit from better technological skills.

What’s the most fulfilling part of the work you do?
When you see that you are making a change in society, in people’s lives, and that those lives are for the better, not for the worse, and that you are actually filling a gap that exists. That gives one great personal satisfaction, that one is actually able to achieve that.

What’s your hidden talent?
I can’t be absolutely certain, but I think I have the ability to listen patiently. I am a good listener and will listen to people with whatever issues they have. Perhaps to learn, listen to people patiently, and help others when I can, to lift them and help them get out of whatever doldrums they are in. Above all, I care about people. I care about their lives, how they live them, and how one can make it
better. We always have a responsibility in that regard and I take that responsibility quite seriously. I’ve cared about human rights ever since I was very young, living in Malawi, and it’s been an uncomfortable companion for me. Uncomfortable, in the sense that it pricks my conscience, something I’ve got to live with, something that you know you need to make changes to make people’s lives better, fairer, more just.

Board Member Feature: Kathryn Oviatt

Name: Kathryn Oviatt

Titles:  Barrister and Solicitor, or Lawyer, Qualified Arbitrator, Partner at Oviatt Law, Labour Arbitrator, Tribunal Member for the Alberta Human Rights Commission, Hearing Panel roster member for the Real Estate Council of Alberta.

Favourite quote: “Do the best you can until you know better, then when you know better, do better.” – Maya Angelou

When did you start working with FOAJ?

I was just appointed recently, in April 2019.

Can you tell me a little bit about your story getting to where you are now? I.e. where you went to school, where you grew up, etc.

I was born and raised in Edmonton, so I’m a lifelong Edmontonian. I went to the University of Alberta for both my Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and for my Bachelor of Laws degree, both awarded with distinction. I articled at a large law firm called Field Law. Following that, I went to the Court of Queen’s Bench where I was legal counsel for the justices. I returned to Field Law and worked there for 7 or 8 years in Labour Law and Professional Regulation. In 2014 I left Field Law to join my husband at Oviatt Law and to start a neutral adjudication practice.

Why did you pursue a career in administrative justice?

When I was a summer law student, I worked for a tribunal and that was my first introduction to administrative law. I worked for the Municipal Government Board and did a lot with property tax appeals and subdivision approvals. I remember getting the job thinking it was good for my career, albeit a bit boring. However, I realized it wasn’t boring at all. It had a lot of nuance and was really focused on fairness that deeply affected people’s lives. I quickly realized that most people won’t be going to a court to resolve disputes, but most people do appear before a tribunal of some kind at some point in their lives. Fairness in these tribunals is so important. Even in things that sound boring, it’s really important that decisions are made carefully and that fairness is awarded to all parties. That’s what I pursued as I built my legal career.

What are some common misconceptions about administrative justice?

That administrative tribunals aren’t fair, or that they are like a kangaroo court. The administrative tribunals that I have worked with have really worked hard at fairness, making sure that everyone gets a chance to participate fully and that they get a decision based on the evidence. In reality, I’ve found administrative justice workers to be quite passionate about fairness.

What’s been your favourite part so far?

I like working with all of the different people. You get staff who work for the tribunals, you work with the other tribunal members that come from a wide range of backgrounds, and you’re interacting with individuals affected by your decisions too, so members of the public. There’s a cross section of the community that I find very rewarding and humbling to see the diversity that’s present.

What do you do at FOAJ? What are some day-to-day tasks that you enjoy doing?

I’m new to the board of directors, so I’m still trying to figure out what my role is there! I’m excited about setting policy, overseeing operations, that sort of thing, but time will tell what my role develops into.

What are the values that drive you?

A lot of what I’ve already talked about. Mainly fairness and transparency. As a neutral adjudicator, I don’t need the parties to like me or like my decision, but I do care about whether they think I’m fair, and that’s the underlying driver for me.

Your top 3 favourite books/podcasts? What do you like to do when you’re not working?

I love David Sedaris as an author! His latest book Calypso was brilliant. Terry Pratchett is also one of my favourites. I am a Game of Thrones nerd. For podcasts, I really like This American Life and anything by Jonathan Goldstein. I’m an avid outdoors person, so I mountain bike, hike, ski, and love to be in the mountains. And I spend a lot of time chasing after my kids!

What three words describe you best?

Personable, diligent, loyal.

Who was your role model growing up?

I really liked a female climber named Lynn Hill, who did the first free ascent of the Nose on El Capitan in Yosemite. I’m an avid outdoors person and used to be a rock climber. I’m really interested in sport, and since women aren’t represented well in professional athletics, for her to have this massive achievement was so inspiring. She’s an extraordinary human being and a very driven person.

What skill would you love to learn, in work or in general?

I want to learn to play the ukulele!

What’s your hidden talent?

Home design. I just love beautiful spaces and I love figuring it out, like a puzzle, how to make a space work.

It is a busy month for the FOAJ as we host our Annual General Meeting, CTAJ™ Graduation and the Human Rights and Charter Values for Tribunals course in Edmonton.

The FOAJ Annual General Meeting and CTAJ™ Graduation

April 16th, 2019

Radisson Edmonton South – Palm Room

Edmonton, AB

Evening Agenda

5:30pm – Welcome Reception & Dinner

6:30pm – Annual General Meeting

7:30pm – Certificate in Tribunal Administrative JusticeTM Graduation

8:00pm – Presentation

8:30pm – Networking

Register Now

Human Rights and Charter Values for Tribunals Course

April 15 & 16, 2019


Instructors: Adrian Wright/Sheldon Toner

The Charter of Rights plays an important role in the work of most tribunals.  Many may rely on the Human Rights Act in the course of making a decision.

We are excited to announce that the Human Rights and Charter Values for Tribunals course is coming to Edmonton in April! This two-day course covers the essential features of both the Charter of Rights and the Human Rights Act.  It is relevant to tribunal members, advocates and staff.

The purpose of this advanced workshop:

  • Overview of Charter of Rights and Human Rights
  • Analysis of human rights legislation
  • Recognizing human rights issues problems by decision-makers and staff
  • Presenting human rights cases
  • Knowing what to do when confronted with human rights issues
  • Understanding and developing a process for addressing human rights issues in the tribunal context
  • Sensitivity to human rights issues

Who should take this advanced workshop:

  • Decision-makers in areas likely to encounter human rights issues. This could be any administrative tribunal but principally in the areas of human rights, workers’ compensation, employment standards, social assistance, student loans, landlord tenant, immigration, and pensions.
  • Administrators of decision-makers in these areas
  • Advocates appearing before these decision-makers
  • Staff in organizations encountering human rights issues

Learn more

Register now

Download Our Full 2019 Course Calendar by Clicking Here.

For more information, please contact assistant@foaj.ca or call 780-466-0501