Charles Locke receives Law Society Award

Charles C. LockeCharles C. Locke, QC was presented with the Law Society Award in recognition of his truly exceptional service to the profession and the justice system over more than 60 years.

The Law Society Award is given every two years to honour exemplary lifetime contributions within the profession and the legal community, based on integrity, professional achievements, service and law reform.

The presentation was made by Law Society President Rob McDiarmid, QC at the Bench & Bar Dinner on November 23.

Mr. Locke graduated from the University of BC with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1938 and articled with his father’s firm in Vancouver. He was called to the Bar in 1942.

His legal career, however, was soon interrupted by the war and from 1941 to 1946 he saw active duty with the Royal Canadian Artillery. He participated in the 1944 Battle of Normandy and was part of the Rhine Crossing into Germany in 1945. He rose to the rank of Captain and was mentioned in despatches for his service in France and Germany.

In 1946, Mr. Locke returned to Vancouver and rejoined his father’s firm, Locke Lane Guild and Sheppard, where he remained until 1955 when he joined Ladner Downs. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1960.

In 1978, he was appointed to the BC Supreme Court and in 1988 he joined the Court of Appeal where he served until his retirement from the Bench in 1992 when he returned to Ladner Downs. He retired from active practice in 2003.

In addition to his work as a lawyer and a judge, Mr. Locke served as Vice- President of the Canadian Bar Association, as a Bencher and Treasurer of the Law Society, and as President of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada.

During his retirement, Mr. Locke devoted considerable time to writing a history of the governance of the legal profession in BC, which was published over the course of three editions of The Advocate in 2002 and 2003.

The Law Society Award is a bronze statue of Sir Matthew Baillie Begbie, cast by the late Pender Island sculptor Ralph Sketch.

Past recipients of the award are: Dean Emeritus George F. Curtis, QC (1986), Oscar F. Orr MBE, OBC, QC (1988), Chief Justice J.O. Wilson (posthumously in 1992), Mr. Justice Peter Seaton (posthumously in 1994), Alfred Watts, QC (1996), Martin Taylor, QC (1998), E.N. (Ted) Hughes, QC, (2000), Mr. Justice Ken Meredith (2002) and Rick Sugden, QC (2004).