Wayne MacKay has had a distinguished career as a university administrator, legal scholar, respected teacher, and constitutional and human rights expert. He has served as President and Vice-Chancellor of Mount Allison University, an advisor to Governments, National Agencies and Tribunals on Canadian diversity issues, constitutional issues, and civil rights and human rights initiatives. He has returned to teaching as Professor of Law, at Dalhousie University (2004-Present). In June, 2005 he was appointed a member of the Order of Canada.
Noted for his teaching, innovative research and writing, Professor MacKay has been honored by Universities, faculty and colleagues for his outstanding contributions to academic excellence, human rights and social justice. He is Canada’s leading authority on Education Law, and has written four books on this subject. He has written two books and over eighty five academic articles in the fields of constitutional law and human rights and Education Law. Professor MacKay is recognized as a Canadian expert in constitutional law and human rights.
As a Professor of Law for over thirty years at Dalhousie University’s respected Faculty of Law, Professor MacKay earned a reputation for strong commitment to teaching. His concern for accessibility and equity within the Canadian legal system prompted him to be part of envisioning and implementing the Law Program for Indigenous Blacks and Micmacs at the Law School. He became the Law Program’s first Director, and in recognition of his continuing commitment and contribution to diversity initiatives, the Nova Scotia Government appointed him Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission in 1995-1998.
His broad knowledge, and distinguished record of achievement have resulted in a high demand for his wise counsel as a legal consultant and change agent. He speaks to diverse audiences on constitutional reform and Charter of Rights issues. His respected opinions are sought by academics, public policy makers, government, community leaders, and the local and national media. In 2005 Professor MacKay conducted a year long review of inclusive education in New Brunswick and generated a major Report for the New Brunswick Government on reforming the education system in that province. In 2011-2012 he chaired the Nova Scotia Task Force on Bullying and Cyberbullying and wrote the Report. Professor MacKay has received numerous awards for his achievements, including the WPM Kennedy Memorial Award for the most distinguished Law Professor in Canada, and the Walters Taronopolsky Award for achievement in the field of Human Rights. He was also appointed a Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International in February 2005 and Queen’s Counsel in May, 2009.
He has served on several Royal Commissions, University Task Forces, and Professional Practice Committees of the Canadian Bar. He was a member of the Nova Scotia Pay Equity Commission, has sat as a Tribunal Member for the Canadian Human Rights Commission and the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission. He also serves as a member and Director of the latter body at different times. He is an active member of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society Discipline Committee, the Canadian Association of Law Teachers, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Atlantic Human Rights Center and, was Vice-Chair of the International Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, based in Montreal. He also served as legal advisor to the 2012 First Nations Education Panel.
School of Law, Dalhousie University
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