Mr. Michael F. Welsh

Professional Experience

I am a lawyer with 40 years of litigation experience, having been lead counsel on over a thousand hearings, trials and appeals in all levels of court in this province and in the Supreme Court of Canada, including some 50 formally reported decisions and well over 100 posted on CanLii. Through my professional experience and as a member of professional, wine industry and community organizations I am well-versed in in problem and dispute resolution and in understanding and working with people in difficult situations toward a positive outcome. An effective communicator, I have the ability to assess problems expeditiously and to relate to people from all walks of life. As one who sees life as an opportunity to learn, I never let my mind get stale, but rather seek to educate myself in a wide range of areas. I have taken that learning and passed it on writing, including articles in the Advocate, Bartalk and Canadian Arbitration and Mediation Journal magazines, as author of the Advocate Wine Column and serving as a faculty member in many continuing legal educational conferences and seminars. I have also authored a number of decisions for the BCCRT and Law Society.

Dispute Resolution Experience and Training

  • Family Law Arbitration LAW SOCIETY OF BC (July, 2013)
  • Family Law Mediation LAW SOCIETY OF BC (August, 2013)
  • Arbitration Part II – Conduct of Arbitration Proceedings, ADR Institute
    of BC (October 2012) – 95% grade
  • Arbitration Part III – Arbitration Workshop, ADR Institute of BC
    (November 2011) – 98% grade
  • Advanced Civil Mediation, CLEBC (February 1997)
  • Family Law Mediation, CLEBC (July 1997)
  • Numerous other workshops, seminars, conferences, symposiums as presenter
    and participant.
Professional and Other Activities

  • 2017 – Appointed Queen’s Counsel, province of British Columbia
  • 2016-2017 – President, Canadian Bar Association, BC Branch
  • 2015-2016 – President, ADR Institute of British Columbia
  • 2018-present – Bencher, Law Society of British Columbia
  • 2015 – Chartered Mediator (C.Med.) ADR Institute of Canada
  • 2013 – Certified family Mediator (C.Fam Arb.) ADR Institute of British Columbia
  • 2020 – Chartered Arbitrator (C.Arb.) ADR Institute of Canada
  • 2011 – Fellow (FCIArb.) International Institute of Arbitrators – London, UK
    Certified family mediator and family law arbitrator: Law Society of BC
Academic Qualifications

B.A. (cum laude in philosophy): Cornell University, 1975
LL.B. University of British Columbia, 1980

Mary M. MacKinnon

Professional Experience

Mary Margaret’s practice focuses on the defence of personal injury and sexual abuse claims. She is counsel to a number of national religious institutions, and provides advice on the formation and implementation of policies for responding to allegations of sexual abuse or sexual harassment.

Mary Margaret also acts for schools and school boards – both defending claims and providing workshops and advice on areas of risk management.

Mary Margaret has also been defence counsel for numerous municipalities for over thirty years. She also acts as defence counsel in complex multi-party aviation litigation. She appears regularly as counsel in the British Columbia Supreme Court and British Columbia Court of Appeal.

Dispute Resolution Experience and Training

  • Mediator in over 50 disputes.
  • Mediated personal injury, property damage, insurance and professional negligence complaints.
  • Counsel for the Plaintiffs in a complex multi-party lawsuit involving the collapse of a large financial institution.
  • Counsel for a number of religious institutions in a large number of sexual abuse claims including extensive experience in residential school claims.
  • Counsel for various municipalities in person injury and property damage claims. Defence of a number of aviation insurers in British Columbia involving product liability and personal injury claims.
  • Provides advice on employment matters to a number of corporate clients.
  • Appears frequently in the Court of Appeal for this firm and on referral from other firms.
Professional and Other Activities

  • Member, Law Society of British Columbia, Yukon, and also appears in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut
  • Member, Canadian Bar Association – Past President, Insurance Law Section Past Executive Committee Vancouver Bar Association
  • Advisory Committee to the Judicial Council – B.C. Bar Association Lecturer – CLE, PLTC, Canadian Institute
Academic Qualifications

2020 CLEBC, Virtual Conflict Resolution Conference

2019 Harvard University, Advanced Mediation

2017 Northwestern University, Mediation Skills Training

2016 Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University, Mediating the Litigated Case

1984 — 1985 Gonville & Caius College University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England LL.M.

1981 — 1984 University of Victoria Faculty of Law LL.B.

1980 — 1981 Universite de Perpignan, Perpignan, France Diplome des Etudes Francaises

1978 — 1980 University of British Columbia Faculty of Arts B.A.