How We Help

The Law Foundation encourages and supports projects and programs with the ultimate goal of strengthening Islanders’ ability to access justice and legal knowledge.

The Law Foundation of PEI carries out its mandate by issuing grant awards that include:

  • Continuous program grants - Examples of continuous funding grants are those made available to the PEI Law libraries, Community Legal Information Association, Legal Aid Services, Bar Admission Course, Legal Education Coordinator, and in the form of scholarships.
  • One-time project grants (which may be single or multi-year projects).

Find more information on grants awarded here.


In addition to our continuous funding support, the following legal needs have been identified as our funding priorities:

  • Legal needs of seniors, newcomers and low income Islanders and other vulnerable groups
  • Innovative approaches to enhance access to justice
  • Public legal education that is practical, relevant and accessible
  • Technology, specifically projects that explore or use technology, that enhances the delivery of legal services and/or public legal education

Premier of Prince Edward Island
1936 to 1943

In 1991, the Law Foundation of Prince Edward Island created an endowment to provide a public lecture series to stimulate critical thought and creative energy that might otherwise have occurred had there been a law school or law reform commission within the province. The result was the creation of the Chief Justice Thane Campbell Lectureship in Law series.

The 2022 Thane Campbell lecture was delivered on November 17th, by  Noa Mendelsohn Aviv,  Executive Director and General Counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. Her talk was titled “The Icing on the Cake" and explored tensions between freedom of religion and equality.


2022 - Noa Mendelsohn Aviv, Executive Director and General Counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association
“The Icing on the Cake: Exploring tensions between freedom of religion and equality.”
2019 - Professor Benjamin Berger
Punishment, Suffering and the Rule of Law
2017 - Professor Anne Warner La Forest
Canada and International Human Rights Law at 150
2016 - Marie Henein, LLB Osgoode, LLM Columbia
An Inconvenient Profession
2015 - Adam Dodek, LSM
The Senator, the Chief Justice and the Federal Court Judge: Will the Island ever have another judge on the Supreme Court of Canada?
2014 - Mary Anne Waldron, Q.C.
Rethinking Freedom of Conscience and Religion/Equality in Canada
2013 - Lesli Bisgould, BA (York University) 1987, LLB (Osgoode - York University) 1990.
Animals and the Law
2011 - Panel Discussion
"Stop! Don’t Sign That Contract!" The session was a panel discussion and the panel included Susan Abramovitch, one of the top entertainment lawyers in Canada, as well as Louis Thomas and Jeff Price.
2010 - Toby Elaine Vigod, LL.B, Executive Vice-Chair, Environmental Review Tribunal, Environmental and Land Tribunals Ontario
Environmental Law: Are we making progress?
2009 - Honourable Thomas Cromwell, of the Supreme Court of Canada
Atlantic Canada's Contributions to the Supreme Court of Canada
2009 - Dulcie McCallum, Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Review Officer for Nova Scotia
Audacity of Inclusion
2008 - Dr. Ian Holloway, Q. C., Dean of Law
The Canadian Lawyer in the 21st Century
2007 - Chief Judge Raymond Wyant, Manitoba Provincial Court
Undergoing a Front End Alignment-The Experience of Manitoba’s Provincial Court
2005 - The Honourable Justice James C. MacPherson, Ontario Court of Appeal
The Same Sex Marriage Case-The Intersection of Law & Politics in Canada and the United States
2004 - Prof. Ronalda Murphy (two sessions)
“Just Making Law? Struggling for Inclusion”, and “Making Law Just! Comparing Canadian & American Approaches”
2001 - Prof. Bruce H. Wildsmith
After Marshall (No. 1): Of Law, Power, and Politics
2000 - Peter MacKinnon
Compensation for the Wrongfully Convicted
1999 - Anne Derrick
Wrongful Convictions
1998 - Honourable Gerard LaForest, former Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
The Constitutional Right to Individual Privacy
1993 - The Right Honourable Antonio Lamer, Chief Justice of Canada
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: Challenges and Prospects
1993 - Honourable Joseph A. Ghiz
Panel on Aboriginal Justice Issues
  • 1973-74 Arthur H. Peake
  • 1975-77Norman Carruthers, Q.C.
  • 1978-80 Joseph Ghiz, Q.C.
  • 1981-82William Lea, Q.C.
  • 1983-85David Jenkins, Q.C.
  • 1986-92Andrew Walker, Q.C.
  • 1993-01 John Mitchell, Q.C.
  • 2001-02 John Diamond, Q.C.
  • 2002-09 M. Jane Ralling, Q.C.
  • 2009-16 Paul M. Kiley
  • 2016-22Gary Scales
  • 2022 -William F. Dow, Q.C.
  • 1975-77Bert Campbell, Q.C.
  • 1978-85 John O’Keefe, Q.C.
  • 1986-92 Gordon MacKay, Q.C.
  • 1993-96 Shauna Sullivan Curley, Q.C.
  • 1997-99Donna MacEwen
  • 1999-01John Diamond, Q.C.
  • 2001-02M. Jane Ralling, Q.C
  • 2002-04John Diamond, Q.C.
  • 2004-09Paul M. Kiley
  • 2009-15Patsy G. MacLean
  • 2015-16Gary Scales
  • 2016 -Barbara E. Smith, Q.C.
Representatives of Department of Justice
  • 1973-77Wendell MacKay
  • 1979-81Graham Stewart, Q.C.
  • 1981-82George McMahon
  • 1982-93Arthur Currie, Q.C.
  • 1993-96Shauna Sullivan Curley, Q.C.
  • 1996-99David Riley
  • 1999-01Ronald MacMillan, Q.C.
  • 2001-02Walter McEwen, Q.C.
  • 2002-05Patsy MacLean
  • 2005-08Edison Shea, CA
  • 2010-13Shauna Sullivan Curley, Q.C.
  • 2014-16Michele Dorsey, Q.C.
  • 2016-20Erin T. Mitchell
  • 2021-Jonah Clements
Law Society Appointments
  • 1973Kenneth MacDonald, Q.C.
  • 1973-77Ronald Dalzell, Q.C.
  • 1973-79Norman Carruthers, Q.C.
  • 1973-81Joseph Ghiz, Q.C
  • 1979-80Douglas Ross, Q.C.
  • 1979-80Jacqueline Matheson
  • 1979-85John A. O'Keefe
  • 1980-82Bernard McCabe, Q.C.
  • 1981John McQuaid
  • 1982-83John Ramsay, Q.C.
  • 1982-85John Carr, Q.C.
  • 1982-91Thomas Matheson, Q.C.
  • 1983-96Andrew Walker,Q.C.
  • 1983-96J. Andrew Walker, Q.C.
  • 1984-86Ronald MacMillan, Q.C.
  • 1985-87Gordon MacKay, Q.C.
  • 1985-87J. Kenneth Clark, Q.C.
  • 1986-89J. Scott MacKenzie, Q.C.
  • 1988-93John Mitchell, Q.C.
  • 1988-93Gordon MacKay, Q.C.
  • 1989-90Melville Campbell, Q.C.
  • 1990-91Eugene Murphy,Q.C.
  • 1990-91Ross Pigot
  • 1991-92Michele Murphy, Q.C.
  • 1991-95Wendy Reid, Q.C.
  • 1993-96Donald Large, Q.C.
  • 1995-99Donna MacEwen
  • 1996-04John Diamond, Q.C.
  • 1996-98Stephen McKnight,Q.C.
  • 1997-99Donna MacEwen
  • 1998-99Diane Campbell, Q.C.
  • 1999-09M. Jane Ralling, Q.C.
  • 2000-02George Lyle
  • 2002-05David Sanderson
  • 2002-08Walter McEwen, Q.C.
  • 2004-16Paul Kiley
  • 2005-15Patsy G. MacLean
  • 2009-22Gary Scales
  • 2011-19John W. Maynard, Q.C.
  • 2015 -Barbara E. Smith, Q.C.
  • 2016 -William F. Dow, Q.C.
  • 2019 -Paul Murphy

The following members of the legal profession generously give their time to carry out the work of the Law Foundation of PEI.

William F. Dow, K.C., Chair
Bill is a managing partner with the law firm Carr, Stevenson and MacKay. He is a Charlottetown native who has been practicing law in P.E.I. since 1992. He received his B.B.A. in 1988 from the University of Prince Edward Island, and his LL.B. in 1991 from Osgoode Hall Law School.

Bill’s practice is in the areas of Civil Litigation, Real Estate and Corporate-Commercial Law.

Bill is currently a Lecturer of Business Law Courses at the University of Prince Edward Island. He is a Past Chairperson for the Canada Pension Plan Review Tribunal and is a Past President of the PEI Branch of the Canadian Bar Association. He has also served as a Director on the Canadian Bar Insurance Association.

Bill lives in Charlottetown with his wife Dalene and their sons Joshua and Noah, and their daughter Ava. Bill is an avid golfer.

Barbara E. Smith, K.C., Treasurer
Barbara joined the Charlottetown Office of Stewart McKelvey (then Scales Jenkins McQuaid) as a clerk in March of 1990 and returned to the firm after graduating from Dalhousie Law School in June of 1991 to complete her articles.  She was called to the PEI Bar in April of 1992, became a partner with the firm in 1997 and received her Queens (now Kings) Counsel designation in January of 2008.

Barbara carries on a diversified solicitor’s practice in the areas of corporate/commercial, real estate, and wills, trusts and estates, and is also a registered trade-mark agent (Canada).  She is a member of the Law Society of Prince Edward Island and the Canadian Bar Association.  She is also an active volunteer in her community. Some of her previous involvements include serving as a board member and chair of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Foundation Inc., serving as a member of the Advocacy Committee of the Canadian Cancer Society, PEI Division where, as a result of this involvement, she was the recipient of the Queens Jubilee Award in 2002, and serving as a board member and chair of the Colonel Gray Education Foundation Inc.

She is presently a member of the Board of Directors of the Holland College Foundation and the Past President of the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce.

Paul Murphy
Paul is a member of the Law Society of Prince Edward Island and the Chartered Professional Accountants of Prince Edward Island. He graduated from the University of New Brunswick Faculty of Law in 2009 and articled at the law firm of Stewart McKelvey. 

Paul is currently the Chief Financial Officer and General Counsel of the Murphy Hospitality Group. In addition, Paul currently owns and operates the Loyalist Country Inn & Convention Centre in Summerside, Prince Edward Island.

Paul is active in his community and currently serves as a Director of the Charlottetown Tennis Club.  He is also a sessional lecturer with at the University of Prince Edward Island in the area of Corporate Finance.

Paul lives in Charlottetown with his wife Darla and their two daughters: Elodie and Dorothy.

Jonah Clements
Jonah Clements was appointed as Deputy Minister of Justice and Public Safety and Deputy Attorney General in May 2021. Prior to his appointment, he served as General Counsel for the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission. Jonah was called to the bar in 2013 after completing his studies at the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie and Carleton Universities. He also studied at the Bucerius Law School in Hamburg, Germany.

Robert MacGregor
Robert acts as counsel at McInnes Cooper, Charlottetown. He represents clients in matters involving financing, real estate, business purchases and sales, business start-ups and reorganizations.

Robert obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration from University of Prince Edward Island, a Master of Business Administration from Saint Mary’s University and a Bachelor of Laws from Dalhousie University. 

He is a sessional lecturer at the University of Prince Edward Island, teaching business law. Robert is a member and past President of the Law Society of Prince Edward Island, and is a member of the Canadian Bar Association and the Canadian Tax Foundation.

Our Staff

Executive Director, Rachel Paterson
Financial Officer, Lisa MacKay