Manitoba appoints 17 new lawyers as King’s Counsel

The Manitoba Legislative Building in Winnipeg. Photo: Canva/HR Law Canada

The Manitoba government has appointed 17 Manitoba lawyers as King’s counsel in recognition of outstanding contributions to the practise of law, Justice Minister Kelvin Goertzen announced today.

“The appointees we honour today have been long-serving members of the legal profession who have demonstrated outstanding practice, contributed to excellence in their profession and shown integrity and leadership throughout their careers,” said Goertzen. “Congratulations to all King’s counsel appointees for earning this honour.”

Those receiving the King’s counsel (KC) designation include:

  • Thomas Gordon Frohlinger, KC;
  • Jeffrey Brian Hirsch, KC;
  • John David Stefaniuk, KC;
  • Stuart James Blake, KC;
  • Kevin Terrance Williams, KC;
  • Helga Dale Van Iderstine, KC;
  • Evan Jay Roitenberg, KC;
  • Lawrence Isaac Pinsky, KC;
  • Grant Andrew Stefanson, KC;
  • Christine Ria Van Cauwenberghe, KC;
  • Michael Arlyn Conner, KC;
  • David Earl Swayze, KC;
  • Sarah Ann Inness, KC;
  • Lisa Junio Stiver, KC;
  • Rekha Nadine Malaviya, KC;
  • Priscilla Sternat-McIvor, KC; and
  • Sofia Mirza, KC.

King’s counsel is an honorary title given to a lawyer by the lieutenant-governor in council, based on recommendations made by the minister following consultation with an advisory council. To be considered for the title, the lawyer must have demonstrated outstanding practice, operated with integrity and leadership, fostered excellence in the profession and been in practice for at least 10 years, the minister noted.

Goertzen noted the advisory council includes representatives from the judiciary, legal community and the public. It is chaired by Justice Diana Cameron of the Manitoba Court of Appeal and includes representatives from the Law Society of Manitoba and the Manitoba Bar Association. Joy Loewen, Andrea Martens and William Pope serve as public representatives.

The practise of King’s counsel (formerly Queen’s counsel) appointments in Manitoba stopped in 2001. The Queen’s Counsel Act, passed in 2018, restored Queen’s and King’s counsel appointments with new and transparent eligibility criteria for lawyers in Manitoba.

The minister noted that all previous Queen’s counsel appointments have automatically become King’s counsel and may use the designation KC.

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