The Office's Role

The Executive Office provides planning, policy, and advisory support to the Nova Scotia Judiciary.

It represents the Judiciary, when working with other justice system organizations, on initiatives aimed at improving the administration of justice. It assists with the coordination of the Judiciary's protocol events and ceremonies.

The Executive Office is also responsible for the publication of Judges' decisions (rulings). It also works to protect the security of judicial information.

Finally, the Executive Office acts as a liaison with the media and public, provides communications advice to Judges, maintains the Courts' website and various Twitter accounts, and occasionally webcasts court proceedings.

Responsibilities (General)

Strategy And Advisory Support:

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research, support, advice, and strategy on initiatives and issues led by or involving the Judiciary

Liaison:

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with the other two branches of government (legislative & executive) and the organizations that make up the justice system

Protocol And Events:

Executive Director

KANDACE TERRIS

Phone: (902) 424-3690
Fax: (902) 424-0758

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plan, organize, and conduct events, such as swearing-in ceremonies for new Judges, which mark important judicial milestones

Co-ordinating:

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the preparation & equipping and renovation & updating of offices for new and sitting federally-appointed Judges, meeting organization - acts as a committe secretariat

Law Clerks Program:

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provides administrative support for this educational and learning opportunity for law students and young lawyers as they work with the Court of Appeal or the Supreme Court
 

Responsibilities (Specific)

Technology:

The Executive Office's Manager of Judicial IT Security, together with the Judiciary's "All Courts Technology Committee" and "Courthouse Standards Committee" are responsible for the security and control of all judicial information.
Based on the Canadian Judicial Council's "Blueprint for the Security of Judicial Information", they develop and implement new policies, including:

Manager of Judicial IT Security

MICHAEL MACPHEE

Phone: (902) 424-3690

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the secure storage and access of judicial information such as Judges' correspondence, their decisions (as they are being written), and minutes and materials from their meetings
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the proper use of technology such as computers, office equipment, and cell phones belonging to Judges and their judicial support staff
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the appropriate use of technology, such as video conferencing, in the courtrooms
 
 

Communications:

The Communications Director’s primary responsibility is to act as a liaison between the media/public and the Judiciary. She does this by:
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helping the media and the public get access to the Courts and their documents, files, records, and other information, where appropriate
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managing the Courts' website and various Twitter accounts

Director of Communications

JENNIFER STAIRS

Phone: (902) 424-6018
E-mail: stairsjl@courts.ns.ca

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facilitating the live broadcast (on this website) of certain court proceedings

Education:

Providing educational opportunities and resources for students and teachers is a joint responsibility of the Communications Director and the Office Administrator. That includes:
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Developing and facilitating access to resource materials, such as mock trial scripts and Judges' speeches and papers
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Coordinating visits to courthouses to sit in on trials or to conduct their own mock trials
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Promoting the interactive features on the Courts' website, including “Justice Wise” (for elementary school students), “Try Judging” (for teens and young adults), and the newest educational tool, "Judges in Canada".
 
 

Decisions:

The Publication Manager provides public access to as many of the Courts’ decisions as possible. At the same time, she guards the privacy of those involved in the Court cases when, by law or Court order, they appropriately need protection.
The Manager is responsible for:

Publication Manager (Term)

PATRICIA MILLAR

Phone: (902) 424-2557

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posting the Judiciary’s decisions on the Courts website
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e-mailing decisions to the media as they are released by Judges
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providing decisions to commercial publishers
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posting them on the Judiciary’s internal decisions database
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supervising the work of the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court Law Clerks
         

History Of The Office

The Nova Scotia Judiciary's Executive Office is unique. Ours is the only Province or Territory that has such an office serving all the Judges of all the Courts under the guidance of their Chiefs and Associate Chiefs.

It evolved out of an idea first put into practice by the Honourable Lorne Clark, the former Chief Justice of Nova Scotia (from 1985 to 1998). In the mid 1990s, recognizing that many of the issues faced by one Court, are shared by the other levels and types of Courts, he brought the Chiefs together as a committee that met on a regular basis. And that, eventually, led to the creation of the Executive Office in 2002.

 
The Executive Office of the Nova Scotia Judiciary
1815 Upper Water Street
Halfiax, Nova Scotia
B3J 1S7
  Phone: (902) 424-3690
Fax: (902) 424-0758

E-mail: Executive Office