Council members

Andrew Arruda (San Francisco)

Andrew Arruda is an entrepreneur, lawyer and 2014 graduate of USask law. He is Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of the artificial intelligence company ROSS Intelligence, a leader in the legal technology industry. Arruda speaks internationally on the subjects of AI, legal technology, and entrepreneurship and has been featured in publications such as The New York TimesBBCWiredCNBC, CBSBloomberg, FortuneInc.Forbes, TechCrunch, the Washington Post, and the Financial Times. A member of the Forbes 30 under 30 class of 2017, as well as a 2016 TED speaker, Arruda aims to forever change the way legal services are delivered. Prior to cofounding ROSS Intelligence, Arruda worked at a Toronto litigation boutique and with the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development in Lisbon, Portugal.

Brad Berg (Toronto)

Brad Berg is a partner at Blake, Cassels and Graydon LLP and leads the litigation group in Toronto. He has a broad practice, including international arbitrations, and is past president of The Advocates’ Society. Brad and his spouse Brian Rolfes are proud graduates of the U of S College of Law and both clerked at the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal. Brad has a Master of Laws from the University of Toronto and taught trial advocacy for six years at Osgoode Hall Law School.

Gerda Bloemraad (Calgary)

Gerda Bloemraad was born and grew up in the Netherlands. She graduated in 1968 with a Master of Laws from the University of Leiden and worked for a while for the Dutch ministry of justice. After living in Spain, Thailand, England, Greece and Toronto, Gerda and her family moved to Saskatoon in 1981, where she completed her Bachelor of Arts degree at the U of S. At the age of 45, she was accepted into the College of Law. After graduating in 1993 and her call to the bar in 1994, Gerda worked in private practice in Saskatoon, but moved in 1996 to Toronto where she was an in-house counsel for a gold mining company. She retired in 2006 and relocated to Calgary where she has been a director on various boards and an active, enthusiastic volunteer with several non-for-profit organizations.

Jody Busch (Saskatoon)

Jody Busch received both her Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws degrees from the U of S, graduating from the College of Law in 2007. She was involved in founding Community Legal Assistance Services For Saskatoon Inner City Inc. (CLASSIC) and is thrilled with the ongoing success of that organization. Jody articled with, and is still employed at, the Department of Justice Canada, working mainly on solicitor files involving reserve land or land that will become reserve land.

Brent Cotter, Q.C. (Saskatoon)

W. Brent Cotter, QC, is a former dean of the College of Law at the University of Saskatchewan. He obtained his Bachelor of Commerce degree with honours from the U of S and both his bachelor and master degrees in law from Dalhousie University. From 1992 to 1997 Brent served as deputy minister of justice and deputy attorney general for the Province of Saskatchewan. In July 1997, he was appointed deputy minister of intergovernmental and Aboriginal affairs, as well as deputy provincial secretary. Brent is a current member of the Law Society of Saskatchewan and the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society.

Kurt Dahl (Vancouver)

Kurt Dahl is an entertainment lawyer and professional musician. He wrote his Master of Laws thesis in 2009 on the future of the music industry, and has practiced entertainment law in Vancouver since 2010. He tours the country regularly with his band One Bad Son, working with some of the biggest names in the music business. He recently launched his website,, and practices law at Murphy and Company in Vancouver.

Bill Estey (Toronto)

Bill Estey has practised law with Torys LLP since 1974 and has been a partner since 1980. He practised corporate/commercial and securities law from 1974 to 1981, in which year he founded Torys’ research and opinions group. As a member of that group, Bill’s practice involves conducting or supervising legal research, and writing and reviewing legal opinions and memoranda in a wide range of areas, including corporation law, contracts, commercial law, securities law, secured transactions and conflict of laws. In addition, he is regularly involved in advising on the structuring of complex corporate and commercial transactions. Bill has worked extensively with Torys’ litigators on major commercial cases over the years, providing legal research and strategic assistance.

Ken Fredeen (Toronto)

Ken Fredeen is General Counsel, Secretary to the Board, and a member of the Leadership Team with Deloitte LLP in Toronto. He also represents the Canadian firm as a global qualified negotiator, with responsibilities for negotiating global and cross border client commercial agreements. He is a leader in the legal profession and the General Counsel community in particular. He is a frequent speaker and panel member on topics related to the role and challenges of the General Counsel, diversity and in house practice management. In 2013, he was recognized by Canadian Lawyer magazine as one of Canada’s top 25 most influential lawyers and judges in Canada. Ken is also a lecturer at the CCCA/Rotmans Business Leadership Program for In-house Counsel. 

Tim Gitzel (Saskatoon)

Tim Gitzel was appointed chief executive officer of Cameco on July 1, 2011 and has extensive experience in Canadian and international uranium mining activities through more than 20 years of senior management and legal experience. Tim was born and raised in Saskatchewan, graduated from the U of S College of Arts and Science in 1986 and received his Juris Doctor degree from the College of Law at the U of S in 1990. Tim is past chair and current board member of the World Nuclear Association, on the board of Washington-based Nuclear Energy Institute, a governor with Junior Achievement of Saskatchewan, and a member of the Edwards School of Business Dean’s Advisory Council.

Michele Hollins, Q.C. (Calgary)

Having grown up in Saskatchewan, Michele graduated with her Bachelor of Science from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas in 1987. She returned to Saskatchewan and obtained her Bachelor of Laws from the U of S in 1992. After clerking to the Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench, she began her articles and then worked as an associate at McCarthy Tetrault in Calgary, Alberta. In 2001, Michele joined the firm of Dunphy Best Blocksom LLP where she became a partner in 2004 and received her Queen’s Counsel designation in 2008.

Nancy Hopkins, Q.C. (Saskatoon)

Nancy Hopkins practices business law with an emphasis on taxation law and corporate governance. She is a member of the boards of public, Crown and non-profit corporations and has extensive experience in corporate governance issues including as chair of audit, governance and human resources committees. She received a Bachelor of Commerce (1977) and a Bachelor of Laws (1978) from the U of S, was admitted to the Saskatchewan Bar in 1979 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1992. In 1997, she was granted honourary membership in the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Saskatchewan.

Holli Kuski Bassett (Regina)

Holli Kuski Bassett’s practice focuses on civil litigation in all areas and aspects including commercial and contractual disputes, insurance defence, estates, and administrative proceedings. She received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Regina in 2007 and a Bachelor of Laws from the U of S in 2008. She is currently a member of the Law Society of Saskatchewan, the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) and the Saskatchewan Trial Lawyers Association. She co-chaired the CBA Young Lawyers Sask. South section in 2011-12 and served as the vice-president of the Regina Bar Association in 2012-13.

Matthew Lindsay (Calgary)

Matt Lindsay is a 1989 College of Law graduate. He is a partner in the Calgary litigation firm Rose LLP and is a former partner and Calgary managing partner of a national law firm. He has had a long association with the college after graduation, including as one of the creators of the college’s annual negotiation competition. He is also the executive director of ICC Fraudnet, a specialized international lawyer network established under the International Chamber of Commerce. 

Laurie Pawlitza (Toronto)

Laurie Pawlitza is a partner at Torkin Manes LLP in Toronto. Her litigation practice focuses on family law matters. Between 2010 and 2012, Laurie was elected as the 63rd treasurer (president) of The Law Society of Upper Canada. Laurie writes and speaks regularly for legal audiences on issues relating to family law, professionalism, legal education and women’s issues in the profession in Ontario, nationally and internationally. Laurie has been honoured with awards from Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund, the Women’s Law Association and with the Zenith Award.

Martel Popescul, Chief Justice of the Court of Queen's Bench of Saskatchewan (Saskatoon)

Chief Justice Martel Popescul obtained a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Regina in 1976 and an Bachelor of Laws from the U of S in 1979. He was called to the Saskatchewan Bar in 1980. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel (Canada) in 1992 and Queen’s Counsel (Saskatchewan) in 2000. He served as a bencher with the Law Society of Saskatchewan from 1998 to 2003 and was president in 2001. Chief Justice Popescul was appointed to the Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan in 2006 and was appointed Chief Justice in 2012. He resides in Saskatoon. Chief Justice Popescul has previously  presented at numerous legal education seminars. He has also been on the faculty of the Trial Advocacy Workshop for more than 12 years. Chief Justice Popescul has presented on numerous occasions at both the bar admission course and the Canadian Centre for Legal Education (CPLED) program. Chief Justice Popescul was the recipient of the Saskatchewan Legal Education Society Inc. (SKLESI) Outstanding Volunteer Award (North) in 2005 and SKLESI’s Award of Excellence for Legal Education Development in 2008.

Robert Richards, Chief Justice of Saskatchewan (Regina)

Chief Justice Richards received a Bachelor of Commerce (1975) and Bachelor of Laws (1979) from the U of S and a Master of Laws from Harvard University (1982). He worked as a law clerk at the Supreme Court of Canada (1979-80), a parliamentary intern in the House of Commons (1980-81), an associate lawyer with Gowling and Henderson (1982-84), chief of staff to the Right Honourable Raymon Hnatyshyn (1984-85), director of constitutional law in the Saskatchewan Department of Justice (1985-90) and a partner at MacPherson Leslie and Tyerman LLP (1990-2004) before his appointment to the Court of Appeal for Saskatchewan. He was appointed Chief Justice of Saskatchewan in 2013.

Jeffrey Vicq (Vancouver)

Jeffrey obtained a Bachelor of Laws from the U of S in 1998, and a Master of Laws from the University of Ottawa in 2007. A partner in the Vancouver-based business law firm Clark Wilson LLP, Jeffrey’s practice focuses on intellectual property and technology law matters, and he frequently speaks and lectures on these topics. In a peer selection process, Jeffrey was recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in Canada in Technology Law and Information Technology Law. Jeffrey was a member of the Board of Directors of the U of S Alumni Association for many years, serving as president in 2006.

Stephanie Yang (Regina)

Stephanie Yang obtained a Bachelor of Commerce in marketing from the U of S in 2004 and a Bachelor of Laws from the U of S in 2007. She was called to the Saskatchewan bar in 2008 and was an associate at MacPherson Leslie and Tyerman LLP until 2012 when she joined the Brandt Group of Companies as in-house legal counsel.  In 2017, Stephanie joined SaskTel as associate corporate counsel in-house. Stephanie’s areas of practice primarily deals with immigration, civil litigation, and labour and employment law. In 2013, Stephanie was honoured to receive the Saskatchewan Young Lawyer Pro Bono Award and the National Canadian Bar Association (CBA) Young Lawyer Pro Bono Award in 2014.  Stephanie is also an alumna of the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conference from 2017.

Linda Zarzecny, QC (Regina)

Linda Zarzeczny is Assistant Deputy Attorney General for Saskatchewan. She is head of the Legal Services Division, which provides civil legal advice and litigation services to all Ministries, including civil, constitutional, human rights, trade and indigenous law, and legislative drafting.  She is also responsible for the Office of Public Registry Administration. Linda previously worked in private practice, as senior corporate counsel to NOVA Corporation in Calgary, and as Deputy Superintendent of Financial Institutions, and advised a wide variety of clients as Senior Crown Counsel and Executive Director of the Civil Law Division in Saskatchewan Justice. She is a graduate of the College of law, class of 1981.