Category: Uncategorised

International Women’s Day

The AWL Chooses to Challenge for International Women’s Day 2021! We will be making a monetary and time donation to the Elizabeth Fry Society so that more women can access legal services.

AWL Recognizes and Celebrates Black History Month!

Did you know….

  • Virnetta Anderson was a community activist and politician and YYC’s first Black municipal councilor when elected in 1974
  • The Black Law Students Association Calgary Chapter (BLSA Calgary) was established in 2017, and among its active projects, runs a mentorship program to connect its members with Black lawyers in Calgary and has hosted “see yourself here” events for Black undergraduate students interested in going to law school
  • In 2020, BLSA Calgary led the calls to action resulting in the University of Calgary Faculty of Law implementing the Black Student Applicant Process (BSAP)
  • Coming soon (next month!), Calgary will have its own chapter of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers

#blackhistorymonth #allyship #advocateallyship

Membership Renewal/Fee Waiver

As the time for membership renewals approaches, we of the AWL Board wanted to share with our current members and potential new members some important changes to the 2021 membership structure.

In recognition of the constraints on our ability to provide programming during the pandemic and the additional hardships this pandemic has created for many of our members, we as a Board have decided to waive membership fees for all renewing and new members for 2021.

We will continue to offer events online in 2021, including a three-part Allyship, Diversity and Inclusion Series launching on January 27, 2021, as well as virtual networking nights, mystery lunches, mothers in the law playdates, and speaker events. And we remain committed to developing and offering events that allow our members to connect and develop professionally within the constraints we, as so many organizations, continue to face.

Maintaining and strengthening our community of women lawyers in Calgary and supporting the individuals who create this community remain driving objectives of the AWL. Our decision to waive membership fees for 2021 is one concrete step we have decided to take to advance these objectives and acknowledge the disproportionate impact that this pandemic has had on women.

However, many of our operating expenses remain ongoing, and our ability to offer quality programming to our members relies importantly on our funds. To that end, we would greatly appreciate any members who are able and willing to continue with their paid membership do so. We have also included an option on our renewal page for renewing and new members to sponsor memberships for those who may have difficulty paying.

Join / Renew

AWL Annual General Meeting – December 1, 2020

The annual general meeting of the members of the Association of Women Lawyers (Calgary) will be held virtually as follows:

December 1, 2020

12:00 pm

Calgary, Alberta

By Zoom

All AWL members are encouraged to attend and can access the Minutes from the 2019 AGM, as well as zoom information for the meeting in the “Members Only” section of the website after logging into their account.

Call for Directors

The Association of Women Lawyers is accepting applications from women lawyers who are interested in joining the Board of Directors.  Applications may be submitted by email to The Association of Women Lawyers, c/o Rani Wong, at no later than noon on November 20, 2019.  All applications must include a copy of your resume and a short statement outlining the reason for your interest in joining the Board.
The AWL Nominating Committee will review all applications and include up to 8 applicants in the slate of Directors it recommends for election at the AWL Annual General Meeting at 12:00 pm on Tuesday, November 26, 2019 at the offices of Gowling WLG (Suite 1600, 421 – 7 Avenue S.W., Calgary, AB).
The Board Member Expectations are below for your reference.
Association of Women Lawyers (AWL) Board Member Expectations
1. Each director shall prepare for, attend, and participate in at least 8 out of the 10 regular Board of Director’s meetings scheduled throughout the year.
2. Each director shall sit on at least one (1) Board Committee and be an active participant of that committee. The Chair of each committee is responsible for arranging regular committee meetings and leading them.
3. Each director shall prepare for, attend, and participate in the Annual General Meeting of AWL.
4. Each director shall attend at least two (2) AWL events per year.
5. Each director shall review and be familiar with the mission statement and bylaws of AWL.
6. Each director shall review and assess their individual contribution and satisfaction as a board member each year. Each director will be contacted by a member of the Board of Director’s Executive prior to the AGM each year to canvass whether the director intends to stand again for election and to discuss that director’s self-assessment.
7. Each Director shall promote AWL and its mission in their circles of influence.

Winners of the 2019 AWL Golf Tournament

Congratulations to Nicole Lecours, Julie d’Avignon, Lisa McDowell, and Sakshi Sharma; the winners of this year’s AWL Golf Tournament!

It was a great day and we look forward to seeing you all next year. A special thanks goes out to Ashton Butler, Kara Davis, and their team for planning this fantastic event!

Calgary Book Launch – Truth Be Told: An Anthology of Inspirational Stories by Women in the Law

Join contributors to the anthology, members of the legal community, members of the judiciary and students for an inspirational evening of stories.

Thursday, March 21
5 – 7 p.m.
Murray Fraser Hall
University of Calgary

A formal program will take place from 5 – 6 p.m., followed by a book signing and sales, and cocktail hour.

Click here to register.

Questions? Contact:
Peter Dawe, Event Coordinator
403.220.5417 |

Blazing Your Own Path

Check out this event invitation from Legal Leaders for Diversity and Inclusion…

Dear colleagues,

By way of introduction, I am on the Executive Committee of Legal Leaders for Diversity and Inclusion (LLD). LLD is an association of legal leaders across Canada who are committed to promoting diversity in the workplace, as well as supporting initiatives to encourage greater diversity and inclusion in our organizations, the legal profession, and the greater Canadian business community.

Part of my role on the LLD Executive Committee is to increase its presence in the western provinces. In that regard, we have organized an interesting and thought-provoking LLD event on Thursday, February 7, 2019. I would be pleased if you could join LLD in Calgary for an evening of conversation and networking, including a panel discussion on various career paths in law and promoting diversity in the workplace.

Panelists include:

  • Chima Nkemdirim – Vice President, Government Relations at Shaw Communications and former Chief of Staff for Calgary Mayor Nenshi
  • Bindu Cudjoe – Senior Vice-President and General Counsel & Corporate Secretary, Canadian Western Bank
  • The Honourable Madam Justice April Grosse – Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta

Moderator – Munaf Mohamed, Bennett Jones LLP

The speakers will share their thoughts on both challenges and opportunities for lawyers from diverse backgrounds and the different paths they have taken to building careers based on legal training.

The details for the evening are as follows:

Date: Thursday, February 7th, 2019
Time: 4:30 p.m. | Check In and Pre-Mingle
  5:00 p.m. | Speaker Panel
  6:00 p.m. | Networking
Address: 4500 Bankers Hall East
  855 – 2nd Street S.W.
  Calgary, AB  T2P 4K7
  45th Floor, Jones Boardroom

The event will be hosted by the Calgary office of Bennett Jones LLP.


Please RSVP by Friday, February 1, 2019. You are more than welcome to extend this invite to a few members of your legal department or firm who may be interested in also attending, but please have them RSVP separately so we can confirm numbers for catering. We hope to see you there! You can contact me directly at if you have any questions.

If you are interested in learning more about LLD generally, please visit

Best regards,


Jeff Ellis

Chief Legal Officer

Canadian Pacific