Focus On

Ottawa appoints two judges to Federal Court

Tuesday, May 07, 2019 @ 2:50 PM | By John Chunn

The Department of Justice on May 6 announced the following appointments:

Panagiotis Pamel, a partner at Borden Ladner Gervais (BLG) in Montreal, is appointed a judge of the Federal Court and a judge ex officio of the Federal Court of Appeal.

Justice Pamel replaces Justice Michel M.J. Shore, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective March 21, 2018.

Nicholas McHaffie, a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP in Ottawa, is appointed a judge of the Federal Court and a judge ex officio of the Federal Court of Appeal.

Justice McHaffie replaces Justice Richard Mosley, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective Nov. 4, 2018.

Justice Pamel was born and raised in Montreal. After obtaining his bachelor of commerce (Finance) from Concordia University in 1983, he attended McGill University, graduating in 1987 with degrees in both civil and common law. Called to the Quebec bar in 1988, Pamel joined McMaster Meighen, a predecessor firm of BLG. Apart from a short stint in industry, he practised in the area of maritime law at BLG for over 30 years.

As counsel to numerous Canadian and international marine stakeholders, Justice Pamel advised in such areas as casualty and environmental response, marine operations, regulatory compliance, contracts of affreightment, vessel purchase and finance, contractual disputes, statutory prosecutions, marine insurance, salvage and general average, and he acted as counsel in several landmark decisions of the Federal Court, Federal Court of Appeal and Supreme Court of Canada in the area of maritime law.

As a founding member of BLG’s Team North and past chair of the Arctic Issues Committee of the Canadian Maritime Law Association, Justice Pamel’s practice area increasingly included arctic navigation. He has been a regular speaker at arctic shipping conferences around the world.

Justice Pamel is a past director of the Royal Victoria Hospital Foundation and McGill University Health Centre Foundation. He is married, has two boys and mostly enjoys spending time with his family.

Justice McHaffie was born and raised in Toronto. He received a B.Sc. in molecular genetics and molecular biology from the University of Toronto in 1990 and an LL.B. from the University of British Columbia in 1994. He clerked for Justice Beverley McLachlin of the Supreme Court of Canada and was called to the Ontario bar in 1996.

Justice McHaffie spent his legal career at Stikeman Elliott, first in Toronto and then in Ottawa upon moving to the capital in 1998, where his litigation practice focused on intellectual property (IP), public law and administrative/regulatory litigation.

Justice McHaffie formerly taught administrative law and civil procedure at the University of Ottawa and civil trial advocacy at Queen’s University. He has continued his involvement in legal education by speaking and writing frequently on administrative law, IP and advocacy issues. He sits on the editorial board of the Commercial Litigation and Arbitration Review and on the Sopinka Cup Organizing Committee.

Outside the legal world, he is a member of the board and executive of the Ottawa Children’s Choir.

Justice McHaffie and his partner, Julie Beauchemin, are the proud parents of two teenagers.