The Law Society Pro Bono Award recognizes lawyers who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to the provision of pro bono in British Columbia.

This award is presented on a biennial basis in odd-numbered years.

Award criteria

Current and former Law Society members, with the exception of employees of a pro bono organization, are eligible for the award. Nominees must demonstrate how they have:

  • consistently taking on pro bono files over a number of years; and
  • taken an active and ongoing role in promoting pro bono in British Columbia.

Additional consideration may be given to lawyers who have done any of the following:

  • publicly demonstrated a commitment and dedication to pro bono activities, whether through public advocacy, writing articles or performing research designed to support greater pro bono engagement;
  • participated in the governance of pro bono organizations;
  • pro bono work that has been designed and undertaken in an innovative manner; or
  • pro bono work that has resulted in significant benefit to one or more individuals, non-profit or community groups, or to the provision of pro bono services generally.

2019 award recipient

Claire Hunter, QC

The Law Society was pleased to award the 2019 Pro Bono Award to Claire E. Hunter, QC.

Since being called to the BC Bar in 2010, Hunter has taken on countless pro bono files while at the same time building a busy commercial litigation and administrative law practice. She is also currently the president and chair of Access Pro Bono Society of British Columbia.

Hunter has taken on leadership roles with the CBA’s national Pro Bono Committee, Access Pro Bono Society of BC, The Advocates’ Society’s Access to Justice Taskforce, and the Law Society’s Access to Legal Services Advisory Committee.

As president of Access Pro Bono, Hunter spearheaded a new program involving the BC Court of Appeal’s registrar, staff and judges, as well as Access Pro Bono's staff, board and volunteer lawyers. The program addresses the unmet representation needs of Court of Appeal litigants.

Hunter has also promoted pro bono at international conferences and supported the effort to get Canadian firms to sign the Pro Bono Declaration for the Americas.

“In addition to working on pro bono files consistently throughout her career, Claire has played a longstanding role in fostering support for pro bono work in BC, and is a role model within the profession for integrating pro bono work with a successful career in private practice,” said Michelle D. Stanford, QC, chair of the Pro Bono Award Selection Committee.

Further information

For further information about the award, contact Bencher Relations.