Meet our Trailblazer this week - Naiomi Metallic

Naiomi Metallic, is a dynamic woman and practicing lawyer, at the Halifax law firm Burchells LLP. She well known for her significant expertise in Aboriginal Law practice, human and constitutional rights, employment law and other areas of civil litigation and real estate law.

I attribute my introduction and knowledge of the Aboriginal and Mi’Kmaq community to Naiomi, while working at the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission. Naiomi enjoys teaching people about Aboriginal legal issues and her style of delivery is very captivating, leaving her audience wanting to know more.

Prior to her Bar admission in 2008, Naiomi’s legal education included an LL.B. from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie and a civil law degree from the University of Ottawa. Hailing from the Listuguj Mi’gmaq First Nations community, located on the Gaspé Coast of Québec, she was the first Migmaq person to be a law clerk at the Supreme Court of Canada. 

Naiomi is an active member of the Nova Scotia Barrister Society, and was first elected to Chair the Racial Equality Committee in 2011, she also serves on the Credentials Committee and as the Society’s appointee to the Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission, and has served on the Governance and Nominating Committee. Other current volunteer activities include chairing the Steering Committee of the Halifax Aboriginal Peoples Network (HAPN).

In 2009, Naiomi, turned her attention to the 12 Recommendations in the Marshall Commission 1989, following the wrongful conviction of Donald Marshall Jr. The of the day government recognized the need for appointing visible minority judges and administrative board members where possible. At the time of writing the article there were only one African Nova Scotian Judge (Judge Connie Sparks, of the Nova Scotia family court division), and no Mi’Kmaq judges.

Recently on CBC Information Morning, Naiomi Matallic spoke out about the slow progress of change in the judicial system.

Listen to her conversation Slow progress on minority judges