Trudeau names Michael Wood as the new chief justice of Nova Scotia

Justice Michael Wood will take over from the recently retired Chief Justice Michael MacDonald. Provided/Nova Scotia Judiciary

Nova Scotia has a new chief justice.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Wednesday that Justice Michael Wood will take over from the recently retired Chief Justice Michael MacDonald.

Wood has been a member of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia since 2011, after spending decades practising law with Burchells LLP in Halifax.

“We are delighted to have one of the very best judges in this province now leading the Nova Scotia Judiciary,” said Chief Justice Joseph Kennedy of the province’s Supreme Court.

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Wood becomes chief justice of the Appeal Court of Nova Scotia, administering the business of the province’s highest court and presiding over appeal hearings.

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The chief justice also serves as the province’s administrator, stepping in when the lieutenant governor is absent and chairs the Nova Scotia Judicial Council, the executive office of the Nova Scotia Judiciary, and the Nova Scotia Council of Chiefs.

An official biography says Wood was born in Portsmouth, England, while his father was on exchange with the Royal Navy.

He studied chemistry before getting his bachelor of laws from Dalhousie University.

Wood has mentored new judges, as well as visible minority lawyers who want to become judges.

“Chief Justice Wood brings almost 30 years of experience practising law in Halifax, and, more recently, nearly eight years as a judge on the province’s Supreme Court. I know his experience and expertise will be a great asset to the province’s Court of Appeal,” Trudeau said in a statement.

Wood will be officially sworn in at a robing ceremony in the coming weeks.

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