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2018/2019 CPLED Opportunities: Face-to-Face Sessions

Each year, LESA partners with experienced legal professionals to host Alberta’s bar admission CPLED Program. We’ve already had more than 300 students apply for the 2018/2019 CPLED year, and we’re still taking applications for the Face-to-Face modules. Having this many students means we need a lot of support from Alberta’s legal community to help the CPLED Program run smoothly. That’s why today’s blog shares upcoming CPLED opportunities that you can get involved with.

One of the CPLED Program goals is to help students develop entry-level lawyer competencies. The desire to help new, aspiring lawyers develop their competencies is one reason why more seasoned lawyers choose to be a part of the program. If you’re one of those lawyers who wants to give back, you’re in luck – LESA has plenty of CPLED opportunities to fill.

LESA is currently recruiting for the 3 face-to-face sessions that comprise the CPLED program (see the 2018/2019 Key Dates).

Face-to-Face Sessions

Each face-to-face session runs over 3 days in Edmonton and Calgary, and individual volunteers usually commit 1 day of their time to the CPLED Program. Instructors help guide discussion and answer questions on teaching and learning exercise days, and evaluators grade final assessments on competency evaluation days.

LESA provides training materials and a pre-session conference call to ensure that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities.

Apply for CPLED Opportunities

Please note: CPLED instructors and evaluators must have a minimum 4 years at the bar.

If you would like to get involved, complete the application form below.

– Please email all Face-to-Face Inquiries and application forms to Kathy Fortier.


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LESA Leadership Announcement

Maura O. Sutherland has announced her resignation as the Executive Director of the Legal Education Society of Alberta. See her official announcement here.

LESA is extremely grateful for Maura’s contributions, over a short term, including her support on the development of LESA’s new strategic goal (focused on new lawyers), on upcoming CPLED developments, and for maintaining connections with LESA’s many stakeholders.

Maura will continue to support LESA over the coming months to ensure a smooth transition in leadership. She will remain our supporter and ally within the legal community. Thank you for your service Maura!

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AJEFA Annual Banquet

AJEFA Annual Banquet and General Meeting
The Association des jurists d’expression française de l’Alberta (AJEFA) is hosting their Annual Banquet on June 1 (Edmonton) at the La Cité francophone (8627-91 St NW).


Annual General Meeting | 4 PM
This meeting is intended for AJEFA members. However, you’re welcome to attend this meeting as an observer. Interested in becoming an AJEFA member? Click here.

Panel on Legalization of Cannabis | 5 PM

Cocktail Reception | 6 PM

Annual Banquet | 7 PM
Join the Honourable Justice Mary T. Moreau, Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta, to hear about access to justice in Alberta and her vision for the future.


Please note that the Annual General Meeting and the panel are free activities, while the Annual Banquet is a paid event.

To register for these activities, complete the registration form before May 18, 2018.

Click here for more information. For assistance, contact Maria Vigneault at 780-450-2443 (ext. 105) or email

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Paper Summary—The Recipe for Successful Legal Project Management

The Recipe for Successful Legal Project Management.

The Recipe for Successful Legal Project Management: Ingredients to Adopt in Practice | Kristian Duff
50th Annual Refresher: Practice Excellence

What is legal project management [LPM], and how can you use it to improve internal efficiency and increase profit?

Kristian Duff provides answers to these questions and more in her paper, The Recipe for Successful Legal Project Management: Ingredients to Adopt in Practice.

According to Duff,

LPM is the planned, organized allocation of resources toward a certain objective.”

When used correctly, it results in accurate pricing, budgeting, and mapping for services provided. LPM originated, and gained traction, within in-house counsel circles where it was more useful. Because in-house counsel see similar types of transactions occurring in similar time-frames and patterns, it is easier to apply LPM’s characteristic checklists, templates, and precedents. It is important for law firms to employ or improve their use of LPM as it pre-emptively considers issues of internal efficiency and helps law firms deliver high-quality, cost-effective services.

Duff highlights 2 main challenges that arise when implementing LPM.

1. Litigation has been viewed as being heavily dependent on factors outside of the lawyer-client relationship (e.g. uncooperative opposing counsel, self-represented opposition who have difficulty using the legal system, and long waits for special applications). These issues cannot be prevented by the use of LPM.

2. In order to be effective, LPM requires long-term dedication and thoughtfulness. In other words, the person coordinating the project needs to stay with the project and cannot expect it to function independently. These challenges make LPM more difficult, but not impossible.

Having set out what LPM is and what challenges it faces, Duff goes on to set out 4 steps of effective LPM:

1. Define client expectations,

2. Prepare and plan,

3. Monitor and manage, and

4. Report and reflect.

As Duff notes, the combinations of these steps create a system for identifying the objective and scope of the project, team management, and growth. Ideally, project managers who use these 4 steps of LPM will improve their practice and build confidence with their clients.

Duff also issues a few warnings to project managers:

1. A team-leader should use every project as an opportunity to grow, even those projects with unsatisfactory outcomes.

2. Project performance and team efficiency will improve with practice and data collection. For instance, gathering timekeeping data will allow law firms to get better at estimating fees to be charged for services. Duff also qualified the use of LPM, which is geared more toward large transactions that total more than $30,000 in fees and have multiple professionals working on them.

3. LPM may not be a suitable practice where a transaction is small and headed by a single professional.

Ultimately, Duff explains and describes the processes behind effective LPM by breaking it down into an easily digestible 4-step process geared toward streamlining legal services and ending up with happier clients.

Want to learn more? View sample pages from this paper here.


LESA LibraryInterested in purchasing this paper? Or, are you looking to find out what other materials are available from the 50th Annual Refresher: Practice Excellence (2016/2017)?

With an annual subscription to the LESA Library, you can not only access this paper, but also hundreds of program materials from our past programs anytime; anywhere. This cost effective resource even gives you the ability to set customizable notifications to ensure that you are always up to date with the latest educational resources.

Click here to learn more about the LESA Library. Alternatively, you can click here to purchase this paper individually.

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Women in Criminal Justice: True Cases by and About Canadian Women and the Law


Women in Criminal Justice: True Cases by and About Canadian Women and the Law

This month, Durvile Publications will be releasing the fourth book in their True Case Series. Women in Criminal Justice: True Cases by and About Canadian Women and the Law is scheduled for release on May 31, 2018.


Women in Criminal Justice discusses:

  • What it is like to be a woman working in the justice system as a lawyer or judge;
  • What it is like to be a woman caught up in the justice system, as a victim or as an accused person; and
  • How we can change the system to make it fairer to the people — women and men — it impacts.

The stories in Women in Criminal Justice are all authored by Canadian women judges and lawyers, and include:

  • Hon. Susan Lang on flawed forensic evidence;
  • Hon. Nancy Morrison on a horrendous case of sexual abuse;
  • Hon. Lisa Maisonneuve on the emerging role of women in criminal law;
  • Hon. Danielle Côté on the pressures of Judging;
  • Hon. Iona Jaffe on the Toronto 18 terrorism case;
  • Senator Kim Pate on the plight of an indigenous woman in prison;
  • Jennifer Briscoe on the Fly-in Squad in Canada’s far North;
  • Catherine Dunn on Indigenous victims of violence;
  • Kaysi Fagan on a woman caught in the world of drug trafficking;
  • Deborah Hatch on the ubiquitousness of wrongful convictions;
  • Karen Hudson on people in the gallery of criminal justice;
  • Barbara Jackman on immigration and human rights;
  • Lucie Jones on interacting with a population at risk;
  • Susan Kyle on being a Crown and a mother;
  • Jill Presser on the fight for LGBTQ+ justice;
  • Rosellen Sullivan on a 13-year-old’s loss of innocence; and
  • Jennifer Trehearne on interactions of courts and mental disorders.



Hon. Susan Lang recounts the havoc that bad science has wreaked in criminal courts:

We must remember that science is a tool, not a solution.”

Catherine Dunn tells us that “children and vulnerable adults … need to be more supported in the justice system,” and urges more alcohol treatment centres and more assistance to Indigenous people struggling with alcohol and drug addictions.
Deborah Hatch tells us that legal aid, indispensable to a fair criminal justice system, is in crisis, and warns,

The liberty of … accused persons is being sacrificed while debates continue as to how and by whom legal aid should be funded.”



You’re invited to attend the book release receptions.

  • Calgary | May 24, 2018 | 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM | Danish Canadian Club (727 – 11 Ave SW)
  • Montreal | June 7, 2018 | 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM | Paragraph Books (2220 McGill College Avenue)
  • Toronto | June 9, 2018 | 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM | The Fifth Social Club (225 Richmond St. W)
  • Edmonton | June 13, 2018 | 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM | Audreys Books (10701 Jasper Avenue)
  • Winnipeg | June 21, 2018 | 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM | Chapters Polo Festival (695 Empress Street)
  • Halifax | June 21, 2018 | 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM | Chapters Halifax (188 Chain Lake Drive)

Pre-order your copy of Women in Criminal Justice from, or at Author royalties go to establishing Indigenous youth writers workshops in NWT.
For a review copy or excerpt inquiries, to set up an interview, or for further information, contact Lorene Shyba, Publisher ( or 403.818.4808.

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May Upcoming Legal Events

May Upcoming Legal Events

Here’s what’s happening in the legal community this month!


Advanced Estate Administration
Analyze unique, complex issues that senior practitioners face in estate administration. Engage in discussions from both a practical and philosophical point of view, and contribute your expertise on best practices and effective strategies for managing estate administration matters. This program is now full. Register today to join the waitlist: May 02 (Edmonton) or May 11 (Calgary).

Business Disputes (Pre-Refresher Add-On Program)
Despite best intentions, business disputes frequently arise. Investigate mechanisms and strategies for avoiding and resolving disputes. Register online to attend May 5 (Lake Louise).

51st Annual Refresher: Business
Join us in spectacular Lake Louise for our 51st Annual Refresher: Business. Deepen substantive legal knowledge and connect with top practitioners from across Alberta. Get approximately 18 hours of programming in various business, corporate, and commercial law topics. Register online to reserve your spot at this conference May 6–8 (Lake Louise). Register for the Pre-Refresher Add-On program Business Disputes as well and save $100.

Mediation of Family & Divorce Conflicts
Mediation is increasingly important in the practice of family law. This in-depth program provides over 40 hours of intensive, hands-on skills training and is recognized by collaborative law associations in Alberta. This program is now full. Register online to join the waitlist: May 14–18 (Calgary).

Legalization of Marijuana
As Canada implements legislation to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, new legal issues will surface. Explore implications of the legislative changes in various areas, including employment, impaired driving, real estate, residential tenancies, regulation of marijuana businesses, and more. Register today to reserve your spot in this program May 17 (Edmonton) or May 24 (Calgary).

Alberta Legal Technology Conference
Engage in insightful thinking on technology in the legal profession. Learn about a wide range of emerging topics, including ethics and technology and how new technologies are improving processes and driving efficiency in the profession. Network with legal application software experts, and learn how they are delivering meaningful solutions to the legal community. Register to reserve your spot in this program May 24 & 25 (Calgary).

Elder Law Topics
Explore elder law issues, including separation, divorce, matrimonial property, adult guardianship and trusteeship, wills and estates, capacity, elder abuse, and more. Register today to attend in Calgary (May 30) or Edmonton (June 7).


The registration deadline for the 2018/2019 CPLED Program year is May 31, 2018. Students who do not apply by this date are subject to a non-refundable late filing fee.
For more information, visit our CPLED for Students page or contact LESA’s Student Coordinator, Craig Edhart direct: 780.969.3554.









Surrogate Town Hall Meetings

  • Edmonton: Wednesday, May 2nd | 12:30 PM–1:30 PM | Edmonton – QB Courtroom 317

Members of the Bar are invited to meet with Chief Justice Mary Moreau and Justice John Little the incoming Northern Alberta Surrogate Practice Advisor, to have an open discussion regarding practices and procedures in Surrogate matters.

Members of the Bar are invited to submit questions and comments relating to Surrogate practice matters, including the process of applying for grants, to the Co-Chairs at

Guest speakers:

Barb Martini | Executive Director, Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee

Cheryl Fix | Assistant Public Trustee


  • Calgary: Monday, May 7th | 12:30 PM–1:30 PM | Calgary – QB Courtroom 1801

Members of the Bar are invited to meet with Chief Justice Mary Moreau and Justice Craig M. Jones, the Southern Alberta Surrogate Practice Advisor, to have an open discussion regarding practices and procedures in Surrogate matters.

Members of the Bar are invited to submit questions and comments relating to Surrogate practice matters, including the process of applying for grants, to the Co-Chairs at

Guest speakers:

Graham Badry | Calgary Regional Public Guardian

Yvonne Gaudet | Assistant Public Trustee

Alberta Lawyers' Assistance Society





If you want LESA’s help to raise awareness about an upcoming event relevant to the Alberta legal
community, contact Andrea Maltais, Communications Coordinator.
780.969.0555 or


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Program Feature: Search and Seizure

Search and Seizure

As technology continues to develop at an exponential rate, the law of search and seizure is also rapidly changing.
Join us in Calgary, June 2, or in Edmonton, June 9 for our upcoming program Search and Seizure, and discuss principles and leading cases relevant to search and seizure.


Examine the implications of the Charter, recent case law, and a wide variety of relevant, practical topics that consider the exclusion of evidence, including:

  • The constitutionality of border searches of mobile devices.
  • The implications of the recent Supreme Court of Canada decisions in Marakah and Jones, and broader issues surrounding the interception of private communications, including the controversial use of IMSI Catchers (aka Stingray devices).
  • Practical suggestions for navigating issues of standing, Vukevich hearings, and cell phone searches in the post-Fearon world.
  • The Grant analysis and s. 24(2) of the Charter in relation to electronic evidence gathering after Fearon, Vu, and Cole.

And more!


Chair | Daniel J. Song | Sprake Song & Konye | Edmonton & Vancouver



Register online to attend Search and Seizure in Calgary, June 2, or Edmonton, June 9. Register on or before April 24 to take advantage of our early bird discount.

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Program Feature: Elder Law Topics

Elder Law Topics

There are a variety of issues that affect our aging population, from elder abuse, to separation and divorce, to medical assistance in dying (MAID), and more. Join program chair, Shelley E. Waite TEP, and faculty for Elder Law Topics in Calgary, May 30 or Edmonton, June 7, and discuss some of these key issues.



Guardian and Trustee Issues | Janice M. Bruni QC
Discuss the various types of guardian issues for elderly people, such as family disputes, who to appoint, resolution through mediation, special hearings, and dispute resolution clauses. Explore common trustee issues, including conflict of interest, applicant credit issues, maintaining joint assets, trustee decisions which may affect rights of survivorship and estate plans, and continuing practices of the adult including donations, gifting, and support for family members.

Drafting Incapacity Documents | Angela L. Yee-Hamshaw TEP
Elder abuse is an ever growing concern in our community. Discuss strategies and best practices for drafting incapacity documents to protect the donor as well as for encouraging transparency, accountability, and activation.

Elder Abuse: How the Public Guardian Works with Stakeholders to Protect Vulnerable Albertans | Graham Badry & Blake Cameron
Review the Adult Guardianship and Trusteeship Act [AGTA] and discuss the role of the Public Guardian with regards to protection issues. Delve into topics, including the definition of capacity, AGTA principles, decision making, and protection options. Practical experience will be shared using examples taken from protection scenarios.

Medical Assistance in Dying: The Alberta Program | James L. Silvius BA (Oxon), MD, FRCP
The law permitting medical assistance in dying received Royal Assent on June 17, 2016, and Alberta has developed an approach that is currently unique in the country. Review the Alberta approach and identify issues and challenges that have arisen as a result.

Practical Considerations of Personal Directives, Powers of Attorney and Guardianship/Trusteeship
– A Care Community’s Perspective | Salimah Walji-Shivji RSW

Learn to understand the facility perspective and considerations when enacting and interpreting instruments as a drafter or advisor.

End-of-Life Choice after Bill C-14 | Bradley Peter (Edmonton only) & Shanaaz Gokool (Calgary only)
Medical assistance in dying (MAID) has been legal in Canada since 2016. However, suffering Canadians continue to encounter widespread barriers to accessing their right to a peaceful death. Explore what this means for the future of healthcare and patients’ rights in Canada and discuss current court cases as well as the unique challenges that Canadians face when navigating their legal end-of-life options.




Register online to attend Elder Law Topics in Calgary, May 30 or Edmonton, June 7.

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National Volunteer Week 2018

Thank you LESA volunteers

Happy National Volunteer Week to the millions of Canadian volunteers and to our incredible LESA volunteers! To everyone who has helped make CPLED, our programs, and our educational resources a great success – we thank you!

You are a valued LESA contributor, and your hard work hasn’t gone unnoticed. We make a point of saying thank you throughout the year, but this week we’re taking a special opportunity to express our gratitude. If you’ve volunteered for us in the 2017/2018 educational year, you should have received a ticket providing you with complimentary access to attend this week’s program Mastering Personal Finances. We’re looking forward to seeing you in Calgary (April 19) or Edmonton (April 20). We hope you’ll enjoy learning strategies for improving your financial well-being and ease your financial stress.

This program is also open to paying registrants. Click here to learn more about this program.

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2018 CBA Alberta: Law Day

Alberta Law Day 2018


Law Day is a national event every April that celebrates the signing of Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. It is an occasion for the public to learn about the law, the legal profession, and the legal institutions that form the cornerstones of Canadian democracy.

Law Day activities across Canada are an excellent opportunity for the legal profession to educate the public about the vital role lawyers and the judiciary serve in guaranteeing an open, independent, unbiased judicial system.

Activities include lectures on the law, mock trials, courthouse tours, open citizenship courts, as well as poster, photography, and website design contests aimed at elementary and high school students.


Attend a Law Day event in one of the cities below!



  • When: Saturday, April 21, 2018
  • Where: Edmonton Law Courts Building (1A Sir Winston Churchill Square)
  • Schedule & Activities

Fort McMurray


  • When: Saturday, April 21, 2018
  • Where: Lethbridge Court House (320 – 4 Street South)
  • Schedule & Activities

Medicine Hat

St. Paul

  • When: Friday, May 11, 2018
  • Where: St. Paul Provincial Court (4705 – 50 Street, St. Paul AB)
  • Schedule & Activities