WHO SITS ON OUR EDMONTON ARTICLING COMMITTEE?
SCOTT D. MACMILLAN, CHAIRPERSON
Partner (Litigation), Volunteer with Edmonton Community Legal Centre, and Brownlee LLP Summer Student Junior Mentor.
Originally from British Columbia, I moved to Edmonton in 2006 to attend the Law School at the University of Alberta. I went through the usual Articling application and interview process without much of an idea of what I wanted to do as a career. I interviewed with a wide range of public bodies, as well as national, regional and local firms. I secured an Articling position at Brownlee LLP, and have since continued my practice in our firm’s Litigation department.
I did not anticipate being attracted to litigation. However, from the first day of my Articles, which included my first Court of Queen’s Bench Masters’ Chambers Application (albeit uncontested), I have been hooked. Thanks to Brownlee’s formal Articling rotation program and the experiences I had working with inspiring mentors, I discovered a practice area where now I could not imagine doing anything else. It was truly a case where my impression of something in law school couldn’t have been more different than my experience! My practice consists of a wide variety of types of litigation, with a focus on Civil Litigation, primarily in the insurance context.
Articling, and now working at Brownlee, provided me with exciting and challenging opportunities every step of the way. Equally important, I work alongside colleagues (Partners, other Associates, students and staff from all of Brownlee’s departments) that I respect and consider friends. It is the collegial, friendly and dynamic atmosphere that first drew me to the firm as an Articling Student and it remains one of the biggest reasons why I am so pleased to continue my career at Brownlee.
JENELLE R. BUTLER
Lawyer (Labour and Employment)
I was surprised to start law school and discover that interviews for Summer positions would be commencing almost immediately, and that Summer positions could have significant influence on the trajectory of your legal career. Despite my reluctance, founded in part by a desire to delay the inevitable entry into the working world, I elected to participate and secured a position at Brownlee.
I had an amazing Summer experience with exposure to a variety of practice areas, which would help shape and provide context for my understanding of the law as I progressed through law school. Equally as important, Brownlee’s culture was great; everyone was welcoming, helpful and, frankly, fun! I had ample opportunity at various social events to interact with lawyers of all vintages and develop professional and personal relationships, many of which I continue to value immensely.
After Summering, I was offered an Articling position, and after a similarly varied and interesting Articling experience, I joined Brownlee’s Labour and Employment practice group. The opportunities I have been afforded to observe others, work closely with more senior counsel, manage my own challenging files, and participate in professional development have helped me grow significantly as a lawyer and foster my love of learning. Providing continued learning opportunities is one of the many ways Brownlee ensures long-term student and Associate success. While this commitment to learning and growth has been key to my positive experience, it is my relationships with other members of the firm, many of whom have been fixtures at Brownlee since my Summering and Articling days, that make it truly feel like home.
REBECCA L. KOS
Lawyer (Municipal and Administrative Law)
I joined Brownlee’s municipal department in 2015, after Summering and Articling with the firm.
Summering at a firm after one year of law school was an intimidating prospect. I was just starting to grasp the very basics of the law, and was not sure I was ready to step into the real world quite yet. However, I was immediately welcomed into the Brownlee community, and any concerns I had about my Summer position quickly faded.
Throughout my summer with Brownlee, I was encouraged to take every opportunity to learn and watch experienced counsel. I observed applications at all levels of Court, attended questionings, and was invited to participate in client meetings. These were invaluable experiences that have stuck with me to this day. These experiences also gave me a unique perspective during my second and third year of law school, as I could more easily see how what I was learning in the classroom would translate into practice.
The focus on mentoring and education continued through my Articling year at Brownlee. The formal rotation through the three main departments in the Edmonton office ensured that I got exposure to each of the practice areas, and had the opportunity to work with nearly all the lawyers in the firm. As an Associate in the municipal group, I have had the opportunity to practice in a unique area of law, and work on a wide array of interesting and challenging files. I continue to be encouraged to try new things while developing a practice that I am truly passionate about.
JORDAN W. SMITH
Lawyer (Commercial Transactions, Corporate Practice, Mergers & Acquisitions, Succession Planning & Corporate Governance)
I find great satisfaction in working as a business lawyer. It is my belief that legal advice should be practical and efficient, and that it takes a strong group of lawyers to be able to deliver such advice.
Having not just Articled and worked as a lawyer for many years at Brownlee LLP, but also briefly elsewhere, I have an appreciation for different work cultures and the importance of fit.
During my Articling interviews, I asked questions and tried to gather all of the information I felt was most important. At the end of the process, Brownlee LLP was clearly my top choice. The reason was pretty simple: I liked the people and I saw a respectful and collegial workplace of skilled lawyers. In chatting with the lawyers at the firm, it was evident that people got along with each other and worked with each other on files in a team approach.
My first impressions of Brownlee LLP and the staff from when I began working here have been confirmed over the course of my career. I am blessed to work here and amongst such skilled and caring colleagues. On a personal and professional level, I have a deep respect for those I work with. I honestly could not imagine myself practicing law anywhere else.