News release

Attorney General Announces Judicial Appointment

Attorney General and Justice Minister Cecil Clarke announced today, Jan. 16, the appointment of Jean Whalen as a judge to the family court and provincial court of Nova Scotia. Ms. Whalen will be based in Sydney.

"Ms. Whalen's extensive experience and broad and varied background makes her an exemplary candidate for the bench," said Mr. Clarke. "She will serve Nova Scotians well, and will contribute to the fair and effective administration of justice."

Ms. Whalen has been an instructor and senior Crown attorney in Nova Scotia. A Dartmouth native, she has close family ties with Whitney Pier. She is one of the founding members of the Black Lawyers' Association of Nova Scotia. She has been the vice-chair of the Race Relations Committee of the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society and a member of the Sexual Harassment Committee at the Nova Scotia Community College.

Provincial court judges are required to have at least five years experience as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia, and must meet other criteria set by the Advisory Committee on Provincial Judicial Appointments. Committee members include two members of the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society, the chief judges of the provincial and family courts, and four laypersons appointed by the Minister of Justice.

The provincial court has exclusive jurisdiction over all summary offences under provincial statutes and federal acts and regulations. The family court provides a forum for hearing issues relating to the family including maintenance, custody and access, family violence between spouses or between parent and child, and child protection matters. More information on Nova Scotia courts, is on the website at www.courts.ns.ca .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Attorney General and Justice Minister Cecil Clarke announced today (January 16th) the appointment of Jean Whalen as a judge to the family court and provincial court of Nova Scotia.

Ms. Whalen is a former instructor, senior Crown attorney and founding member of the Black Lawyers' Association of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Clarke says Ms. Whalen's extensive experience and community involvement makes her extremely qualified to serve Nova Scotians well.

Ms. Whalen will be based in Sydney.

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Media Contact:

Mary Jane Webber
Department of Justice 902-424-0942 E-mail: