THE ADVOCATE V O L . 7 7 P A R T 1 J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 9 15
NANCY MERRILL, Q.C.
By Mary E. Mouat, Q.C.
It is my honour and sincere pleasure to introduce the new president
of the Law Society of British Columbia, Nancy Merrill, Q.C.
It is common for these pieces to follow a predictable pattern of
charming vignettes from the subject’s childhood, followed by a
recitation of the person’s exceptional accomplishments and ending with a
conclusion glowing with accolades. Following that pattern in Nancy’s case
would miss the essence of our new president. Nancy is innovative and
inclusive. I trust that when you have the pleasure of meeting Madam President,
you will already know she is the right person at the right time to be
the president of the Law Society.
We are living in a world that needs principled, courageous and innovative
leadership, and we have those qualities and more in Nancy. The portrait on
the front of this issue provides a number of clues as to the personality and
strength of our new leader. The woman in the portrait is smiling and gazing
directly at the viewer. Nancy is known for her sense of humour and wit.
The dress Nancy is wearing also tells us about her. The dress is designed
by the Good sisters, who are First Nations designers (<www.aylelum.
com>). The dress provides more clues about our new president. She supports
her community. She has an abiding respect for diversity, heritage and
cultural appreciation, as well as having an obvious love of fashion.
It is fitting that Nancy is on the cover of the first issue of the Advocate for
2019, as she has accomplished a number of firsts. Nancy was the first person
in her family to become a lawyer. She was the first female Regional
Intelligence Officer with Canada Customs. She was the first female bencher
for Nanaimo County. She was the first bencher with a master’s degree in tax