A momentous week

(Top left) Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, Lord Woolf, and Chief Justice Gleeson of Australia discuss current issues in judicial independence during a session at "1701- The 300th Anniversary of the Act of Settlement," a conference initiated by Chief Justice Allan McEachern. The conference, held at the Wosk Centre for Dialogue in Vancouver (below), drew judges and academics from around the world.

(Below left) The Chief Justice receives a judicial history from the Chief Justice of Pakistan during a reception for the Supreme Court of Canada, hosted by the Law Society.

Paying tribute

Law Society President Richard Margetts, Q.C. paid tribute to B.C. Chief Justice Allan McEachern on the eve of his retirement. "Chief Justice McEachern will be remembered around the world as one of Canada's greatest jurists," Mr. Margetts said.

He noted Chief Justice McEachern was a world leader in using modern technology to open the courts to the public. "He pushed the courts to develop a website so the public could have

instant, cost-effective access to judgments. Then he went a step further by hosting his own website and inviting the public to e-mail their questions about the legal system. He was certainly the first judge in Canada - if not the world - to make himself accessible to everyone through the internet."

During his 21 years as a judge - 10 as Chief Justice of the B.C. Supreme Court and 11 as Chief Justice of B.C. - Mr. Justice McEachern earned a reputation as an intelligent and insightful judge keenly committed to the justice system," Mr. Margetts said. "Chief Justice McEachern was in charge of B.C.'s courts during the period of their greatest change. He was appointed to the Bench at a time when fax machines were a novelty and he retires at a time when his own judgments are distributed worldwide through the internet. He leaves behind a tremendous body of jurisprudence and I hope he continues to serve the justice system in his retirement."