- Kimberly J. Mackay – Vice-Chair
- Smita Joshi – Commissioner
- Christopher Sheppard – Commissioner
- Ray McIssac – Commissioner
- Madelyn Kelly – Commissioner
- Gobhina Nagarajah – Commissioner
- Victor Lundrigan – Commissioner
- Lauren Carter – Commissioner
- Karen Chaisson – Commissioner
Kim Mackay is a lawyer with over eighteen years of experience as a civil litigator in Newfoundland and Labrador. Currently, Ms. Mackay is an Area Director working in child protection and criminal defence work with the Newfoundland and Labrador Legal Aid Commission. Ms. Mackay has advised clients on issues of human rights, employment law, privacy, personal injury, and wills and estates. Ms. Mackay teaches undergraduate courses in the Law and Society faculty at Memorial University. Ms. Mackay has been the Vice Chair of the Human Rights Commission since 2015 with a particular interest in human rights as it impacts corrections and persons living with mental illness. Ms. Mackay was born and raised in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador where she lives with her two sons.
Dr. Smita Joshi, a Newfoundlander by choice, is a graduate of, Memorial University of Newfoundland and holds a doctoral of education from the University of Toronto.
Smita has worked for the provincial government of Newfoundland and Labrador for over 32 years and has held various leadership positions with the Department of Education and the provincial Office of Immigration and Multiculturalism. Nationally, and provincially, Dr. Joshi is known for her contributions to Social Studies, Human Rights education Enterprise Education and Multicultural Education in the K-12 school system. In 1994, Smita chaired the provincial Education Committee that developed the policy on Multicultural Education to guide and shape provincial school curriculum.
In 2007, she was appointed as the Director of Multiculturalism of the newly established Office of Immigration and Multiculturalism. Smita was responsible for the development and implementation of the policy on multiculturalism.
Smita believes in partnerships and has served on several provincial and national committees including the Conference Board of Canada’s Leaders table on Immigration. She was the co-chair of the Federal-Provincial- Territorial network of Officials Responsible for Multicultural Issues and the chair for the Multicultural Committee for the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. She is the author of several publications and a frequent conference speaker.
She was the co-chair of the Federal-Provincial- Territorial network of Officials Responsible for Multicultural Issues and the chair for the Multicultural Committee for the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. She is the author of several publications and a frequent conference speaker.
Madelyn Kelly is a resident of Happy Valley Goose Bay, NL. She is a graduate of MUN and holds a BA, major in Psychology and English Literature, and a BAED major in Education. Her professional career spans 30+ years in the provinces educational system, teaching high school English and Literature. Her career also includes 6 years of teaching at the College of the North Atlantic as an instructor in the Aboriginal Cadet Program and the Women in Trades and Technology Program.
Madelyn served on the Town Council of HVGB for two terms. During that time she had many and various opportunities to serve her town and the province on committees and boards. She has held board positions on the following: Town Council HVGB, Tourism Board HVGB, Economic Development Board, Legal Aid Commission, MMSB, Combined Councils of Labrador, Wellness Coalition of NL and the Labrador Winter Games.
While on the Town Council of HVGB she served as Labrador’s Rep on the Municipalities NL Board of Directors. In that capacity she chaired the Community Cooperation Committee and served as the Labrador Rep on the Urban Municipalities Committee.
Encounters with Canada, a student focused career organization, nominated her for the Queen’s Jubilee Medal which she received for 25 years of service to the placement of Labrador youth in the program. As a town councilor, she was awarded the Wayne Earle Award for community service. Madelyn remains committed to her community, province and country.
Gobhina Nagarajah was admitted to the Newfoundland and Labrador Bar in 2015 and works as a lawyer in private practice. She practices civil litigation, administrative law, family law, wills, estates, immigration law and real estate. Gobhina has previously sat on the Board of Directors of Eastern Edge Gallery, a non-profit artist-run centre, and is also an active member of Amnesty International Canada.
Gobhina grew up in Ontario and moved to St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador in 2015.
Victor has both a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree of Social Work from Memorial University of Newfoundland. A career spanning over forty years, he worked in various fields of human services and has extensive experience in working with individuals and families with complex needs. In 2017, he ended his professional social work career working with Adult Community Corrections.
In addition, Victor is a valued volunteer in his community. As dedicated volunteer, he has devoted many hours with a multitude of government and non-profit organizations, both provincially and nationally. His volunteerism includes: Violence Awareness and Action Trainer, Canadian Parents for French, Burin Heritage Committee, Mental Health Interagency Committee, Child Protection Team, Board of Eastern Community Health, Complaints Committee – Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Social Workers, Board and founding member of Burin Peninsula Voice Against Violence. Victor‘s volunteer efforts have been recognized by the community, winning NAPE’s 2017 Community Volunteer Award. Victor enjoys working as a team member and working through complex issues with respectful discussion with the hope of arriving at a more just society.
Lauren Carter is 18 years old and from Harbour Breton. She is currently studying at Memorial University to complete a Bachelor of Commerce Co-op degree. She is an avid volunteer and member of the Premier’s Youth Council. Lauren very much enjoys all sports and is an experienced public speaker.
Karen graduated from Memorial University of NL in 1990 with a Bachelor of Social Work degree and returned to her hometown of Burin NL to accept work as a Community Corrections Social Worker. After 11 years in this field, she relocated to Nova Scotia and assumed the role of a frontline worker and later as a district casework supervisor in child protective services.
In 2004, Karen returned to Burin NL and for three years worked as a Mental Health Social Worker at Eastern Health. Since 2007, she has been with the Department of Justice and Public Safety as a Family Court Counsellor where her primary duties include providing co-parenting information and mediation services to families experiencing separation and divorce.
In addition to a very rewarding social work practice to date, Karen has volunteered with local and provincial citizen’s crime prevention organizations, assisted with family violence committee work , was a member of a local Jumpstart sports funding program and currently serves as a volunteer mediator with alternative measures program.
Kim graduated from Memorial University of NL in May 2000 with her Bachelor of Commerce (Co-op), concentrating in Industrial Relations. She then went on to law school at the University of New Brunswick where she graduated with her Bachelor of Laws in May 2003. At UNB, Kim was awarded the William Henry Harrison Memorial Shield & Award for achievement at the Moot Court Competition.
She articled in St John’s and was admitted to the NL Bar in April 2004. She has practiced in St. John’s ever since, focusing her practice in the areas of personal injury law, other civil litigation, criminal law, employment law, real estate, corporate matters, and wills and estates law. Kim has appeared in the Provincial Court of NL; Supreme Court of NL, Trial Division, both General and Family; as well as the Court of Appeal.
Kim is a member of the Law Society of NL and the Canadian Bar Association. Outside of the legal community, Kim presently holds the seat of Chair (acting) of the Conservation Corps of NL, having served on its Board of Directors since 2007. Kim also serves on the Mental Health Care and Treatment Review Board. Most recently, she was appointed as Chief Adjudicator of the Human Rights Commission Panel of Adjudicators.
Ms. Power was born and raised in Churchill Falls but now resides in Mount Pearl. Ms. Power has a Bachelor of Law (Honours) and a Masters of Law in International Commercial Law from the University of Kent in Canterbury. She also has obtained the National Accreditation Certificate from the University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law, an Executive Certificate in Conflict Management from the University of Windsor Law School and a Certificate in Mediation from the Harvard Mediation Institute at Harvard Law School. Ms. Power practices with Robert R. Regular Law Office in Conception Bay South and has clerked with the Department of Justice. Since entering private practice, Ms. Power has coached people on mediation courses, been appointed as an adjudicator with the Human Rights Commission and enjoyed a diverse practice in mediation, civil matters, personal injury litigation, estates, real estate, administrative law, labour law, property law, tax law, family law, aboriginal law and admiralty law. In her spare time, Ms. Power is a volunteer with Scouts Canada and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards along with other organizations.
Ms. Best has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Acadia University and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Windsor. Ms. Best was called to the Newfoundland and Labrador Bar in 1986 and began her legal career with the law firm of Lewis, Day. In 1987, she joined Roebothan McKay Marshall and was admitted to partnership in 1992. Ms. Best has appeared before all levels of court in Newfoundland and Labrador as well as federal and provincial administrative tribunals. Ms. Best has an Executive Certificate in Advanced Mediation and Conflict Management from the University of Windsor. Ms. Best is active in the community with previous roles as a Director of the St. John’s Board of Trade, Chair of Mediation Newfoundland and Labrador and Chair of the School Council of Booth Memorial High School. Ms. Best is currently a volunteer with the Heart Truth Campaign of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador, a Director of the Canadian Paraplegic Association (NL) Inc. and Honourary Counsel for the Duke of Edinburgh Awards.
Ms. Dunne has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of King’s College in Halifax, Nova Scotia and a Bachelor of Laws from Dalhousie University. She was called to the Newfoundland and Labrador bar in 1991 and has worked at a number of law firms before operating her own practice, Gladys Dunne Law. Her practice focuses on areas of family law and real estate. Ms. Dunne has provided legal counsel for Cabot Habitat for Humanity and the Canadian Red Cross Society, Newfoundland and Labrador branch. Ms. Dunne’s adjudicative experience includes her roles as a Commissioner of the Assessment Review Commission in both the City of Mount Pearl and the Town of Paradise. She is also a member of the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Panel of Adjudicators and for six years she was Chairperson of the Canada Pension Plan Review Tribunal.
Ms. Ash has a Bachelor of Arts and Education from St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of New Brunswick Law School, where he was the recipient of numerous law school academic awards. He is an associate with the law firm Poole Althouse in Corner Brook where he maintains a varied litigation practice. He is involved in the community as a member of the Criminal Law Reform Committee of the Canadian Bar Association.
Mr. Gallant has a Bachelor of Science from the University of Prince Edward Island and a Bachelor of Laws from Dalhousie University. He was called to the bar in Prince Edward Island, and in Newfoundland and Labrador bar in 2009. He maintained an active private legal practice until 2015. Mr. Gallant is currently a staff solicitor with the Newfoundland and Labrador Legal Aid Commission. He is a former Chairman of the Board of Directors of AIDS PEI and a former member of the Board of Directors of the Newfoundland and Labrador Coalition of Persons with Disabilities.