The Government of British Columbia is appointing three new provincial court judges to ensure the judiciary has the resources to continue to provide access to justice.
The new appointments fill vacancies created by retirements. They include:
- Judge Jeremy Guild (effective March 12, 2018)
- Judge George Leven (effective March 27, 2018)
- Judge Kristen Mundstock (effective March 12, 2018)
Guild holds law credentials from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand and the University of British Columbia. In addition to his private practice work in criminal, civil and family law, he served as duty counsel for the Drug Treatment Court of Vancouver, prosecutor for the Department of Justice in Burnaby and was a lawyer with the Legal Services Society in Burnaby and Vancouver. He has also presented at, and contributed to, numerous conferences and training workshops on innovative approaches for drug treatment courts and restorative justice. Guild will be assigned to the Interior Region.
Leven received a bachelor of laws (LLB) from the University of Alberta in 1993. After joining the Prince George firm Hope Heinrich as an articled student and progressing to partner, he launched his own practice in 2003. During his career, he has gained experience in the areas of ICBC defence, family law, federal prosecutions and criminal defence. He has also contributed to supporting people involved in the criminal justice system, through board memberships with the Prince George Activator Society and the Northern John Howard Society. Leven will be assigned to the Northern Region.
Mundstock received an LLB from Queen’s University in 1993 and joined the firm Patten, MacDonald and Crabtree as an articled student. Now a managing partner at Patten Thornton, she has gained experience in many areas, including criminal law, estates, human rights law and more. Most recently, she has focused on family law and civil litigation, and has appeared in provincial court, the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal. She has held the positions of secretary and president with the Chilliwack & District Bar Association, and has worked and volunteered with numerous charities in her community. Mundstock will be assigned to the Fraser Region.
Government and the public rely on judges for their integrity and impartiality, and trust they will deliver fair, learned decisions. These qualities are essential for maintaining the public’s confidence in the courts, and are a vital component of any democratic justice system.
The chief judge determines the locations to which judges are assigned in order to meet the needs of the court.
- The process to appoint judges involves the following steps:
- Interested lawyers apply and the Judicial Council of B.C., a statutory body made up of the chief judge, an associate chief judge, other judges, lawyers and lay people, reviews the candidates.
- The council recommends potential judges to the Attorney General, with the final appointment made through a cabinet order-in-council.
- Although judges are located in a judicial region, many travel regularly throughout the province to meet changing demands.
Information about the judicial appointment process: www.provincialcourt.bc.ca