McGillivray, William A.

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McGillivray, William A.

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The Hon. Justice William Alexander McGillivray was born in Calgary on October 14, 1918, the son of Alexander McGillivray, a prominent lawyer and justice in early Alberta. He graduated first in his class at the University of Alberta in 1941, winning the Horace Harvey Gold Medal. He was admitted to the bar on June 23, 1942 and practiced mainly civil law in Calgary from 1943 to 1974. He was practicing with Fenerty, McGillivray, Robertson, Prowse, Brennan, Fraser and Bell, a firm that specialized in insurance, oil, probate and corporate law when he was appointed to the bench in 1974. Justice McGillivray was made Queen's Counsel in 1957 and was President of the Law Society from 1969-1970. He was Chief Justice of Alberta 1974-1984, first in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court and after 1979 in the newly created Court of Appeal of Alberta. He was involved in many controversial cases, including important division-of-powers cases and the first cases under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Justice McGillivray died December 16, 1984. See HISTORY database for a more complete biography.

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