The Advisory: Volume 9, Issue 1, March 2011

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Welcome to New Benchers

THE LAW SOCIETY of Alberta welcomed two new Benchers in February 2011, Dennis Edney of Edmonton and Adam Letourneau of Lethbridge.

Dennis Edney (left) and Adam Letourneau (right)

To understand the law and to seek justice have been the key features of the legal career of new Bencher Dennis Edney.

After completing his law degree from the University of Northumbria in 1987, he began his legal career by serving clients in areas of matrimonial and criminal law. Now, with a practice characterized by cases involving criminal and human rights law, and cases being tried under the new terrorist legislation, his clients represent a poorly understood sector of the population. He has appeared at all levels of Canadian courts, including various landmark Supreme Court cases, most notably R. v. Mills and Canada v. Khadr. He was appointed as Foreign Attorney Consultant by the U.S. Pentagon to participate in the defense of Mr. Omar Khadr, a young Canadian detained in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Dennis Edney was honoured as a co–recipient of the Canadian National Pro Bono Award in 2008. The award recognized that “The fruits of [his] labour have not only increased access to justice for one individual, but impacted human rights the world over”. Also, in 2008, Mr. Edney was named by Alberta Venture magazine as one of Alberta’s 50 most influential people.

In 2009, Mr. Edney was the recipient of the Human Rights Medal, awarded by the Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia for work that has “helped to promote and further human rights”.

Adam Letourneau’s practice focuses on family law, mediation, arbitration, and aboriginal law. As a major part of his practice, he continues to assist a number of Indian Residential School Survivors through the Independent Assessment Process, a settlement program for Survivors who were seriously abused while at Residential School.

Upon receiving a Bachelor of Science from the University of Calgary, Adam undertook a career in business, technology and publishing in various executive roles. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts in English from Athabasca University and received his Bachelor of Laws from the University of Alberta. Adam is the former Editor-in- Chief of the Alberta Law Review, and the author of a book entitled So, You Want to be a Lawyer, Eh?: Law School in Canada (2nd Ed.).

Adam is currently the Chair of Rupertsland Institute, a Métis Centre for Excellence and is formerly the Chair of Apeetogosan (Métis) Development Inc., an aboriginal financial institution. He is an active member of the Métis Nation of Alberta. Adam and his wife, Carmen, have five children.

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