Karine McLaren and Scott Franks Receive the Canadian Bar Association’s Viscount Bennett Fellowship for 2019-2020

  • April 30, 2019

OTTAWAThe Canadian Bar Association’s Fellowship Committee has selected Karine McLaren and Scott Franks as co-recipients of the 2019-2020 Viscount Bennett Fellowship for their graduate legal studies.

The Viscount Bennett Fellowship is awarded annually to a Canadian law student to encourage high standards of legal education, training and ethics.  The Fellowship was established under the terms of a trust created by former Prime Minister and CBA President Viscount Richard Bedford Bennett.  The first Fellowship was awarded in 1946.

Due to the exceedingly high caliber of this year’s applicants, the CBA’s Fellowship Selection Committee determined that both Ms. McLaren and Mr. Franks merited recognition.  The Viscount Bennett Fellowship recipients have each been awarded a $12,500 grant toward their ongoing legal research, training and education.

“Karine McLaren’s focus on access to justice issues contributes to and helps influence public policy development.  Her aim to facilitate access to justice and to training in both official languages is important.  Scott Franks’ work in the area of truth and reconciliation and his interest in the intersection of Indigenous Law and Legal Education is timely and compelling.  Both recipients demonstrated to us that they are equally dedicated to conducting important research which is highly relevant to the CBA and the law.”

– CBA Fellowship Selection Committee

About Karine McLaren

“The challenges linked to access to justice and the rule of law, in both official languages, are for me, fundamentally important to the Canadian legal system.  I use every opportunity available to me to move the debate to higher levels and to seek solutions.  I will be pursuing a Doctorate in Law (LL.D.) at the UniversitĂ© Laval where I will direct my research on the study of the interpretation of bilingual statutes, furthering research to facilitate access to justice, increase the intelligibility, legitimacy and effectivity of the legal norm.”

– Karine McLaren

Quick Facts

  • Karine McLaren is currently a Faculty of Law Professor at UniversitĂ© de Moncton.
  • In 2014 she assumed the position of Director for the Centre de traduction et de terminologie juridiques, Faculty of Law at UniversitĂ© de Moncton.
  • She graduated from London Guildhall University in 1998 with an LL.B. Business Law (First Class Honours) and practiced as a solicitor in England for nearly 10 years.
  • In 2016, she received her Masters of Law Degree (LL.M.) and obtained a Bachelor of Translation (B.Trad.) degree from UniversitĂ© de Moncton.
  • She is the recipient of numerous awards including the Michel Bastarache Prize for best student research paper and the Louis-Philippe Pigeon Chair of Legal Writing Prize in recognition for her work on access to justice issues.
  • She has written numerous articles on various issues linked to the Canadian model of legal bilingualism, several of which have been published in peer-review journals, both in Canada and in Europe.
  • Karine is a member of several justice committees including the RĂ©seau national de formation en justice (RNFJ) and the Department of Justice’s Advisory Committee on Access to Justice in Both Official Languages.
  • She has appeared before House of Commons and Senate Standing Committees on Official Languages testifying on the difficulties linked to the implementation of the Official Languages Act in the Canadian legal system. 

About Scott Franks

“My vision is to foster reciprocity between Indigenous and Canadian laws, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities and within Canadian legal education.  My focus is to investigate the existing barriers which impede the successful implementation of transformative Indigenous legal education and cultural competency in law schools and the legal profession. I believe an interdisciplinary approach that integrates social psychology and critical Indigenous legal pedagogies will help to predict potential barriers for the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.”

– Scott Franks

Quick Facts

  • In 2017, Scott Franks became an Associate with Olthui Kleer Townshend LLP in Toronto, Ontario where he practices constitutional, administrative, civil, labour, human rights, broadcasting Aboriginal tittle, Aboriginal rights, negotiations, return to reserve, repatriations of ancestors, fiscal policy, election codes and bylaws, business development and corporate law.
  • In 2018, Scott was a co-instructor on Indigenous Law and Policy at the University of Toronto.
  • From September 2016 to August 2017 Scott was a Law Clerk for the Supreme Court of Canada under the direction of Justice Adromache Karakatsanis.
  • Scott obtained his Juris Doctor (JD) degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in 2016 and in 2007 his Bachelor of Arts (First Class Hounours) in Political Science from McGill University.
  • Scott is the recipient of numerous awards and academic distinctions including the top 2% of Graduating Class, Osgoode Hall Law School and the Dean’s Gold Key Award (2016); the Arthur Charles Pape Award in Native Rights (2015); the TD Canada Trust Scholarship for Community Leaders (2007-2010) and the Northern Saskatchewan Scholarship to Lester B Pearson United World College (2005-2007).
  • He is a member of the Indigenous Bar Association.

Related links:

Viscount Bennett Fellowship

The Canadian Bar Association

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About the CBA

The CBA is dedicated to support for the rule of law, and improvement and the administration of justice.  Some 36,000 lawyers, notaries in Quebec, law teachers and law students from across Canada are members.