A Kamloops judge has been promoted to the province’s highest court.
Len Marchand, a justice of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in Kamloops, has been appointed to the Court of Appeal for British Columbia.
Marchand replaces Justice H.M. Groberman of Vancouver, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective Feb. 1.
Marchand was appointed to the Supreme Court of British Columbia in 2017. A member of the Okanagan Indian Band, he grew up in Kamloops. After obtaining a bachelor of science in chemical engineering at the University of British Columbia in 1986, he worked in the oil industry for five years. Marchand then attended law school at the University of Victoria in 1991, graduating in 1994.
At the time of his appointment to the Supreme Court of B.C., Marchand was a judge of the Provincial Court of British Columbia, where he had served from 2013 to 2017. Prior to that, he articled and practised law at Fulton & Company LLP in Kamloops from 1995 to 2013. During his days in practice, he focused on the liability of public authorities.
Marchand has appeared before all levels of court and many administrative tribunals.
He has spent a substantial portion of his career working on reconciliation for Indigenous people through, among other things, pursuing civil claims of historic child abuse in institutional settings and representing a large number of residential school survivors. In 2005, he helped negotiate, and was a signatory to, the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, the largest class-action settlement in Canadian history. He served on the Oversight Committee for the Independent Assessment Process and also on the Selection Committee for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
Marchand has also presided in First Nations Court in Kamloops, where, with input from elders, healing plans are developed for offenders.
Marchand is the son of Donna Parr and Len Marchand, Sr., who was the first status Indian elected to Parliament (1968) and given a cabinet post (1976).
Federal judicial appointments are made by the Governor General, acting on the advice of the federal cabinet and recommendations from the minister of justice.