Kathleen Mahoney

Fellows
2008
Current affiliation:
Professor of Law at the University of Calgary
Localisation:

She is a leader in human rights renowned for her work on the historic settlement agreement between the Government of Canada and Aboriginal residential school survivors.

Professor Kathleen Mahoney has been a Professor of Law at the University of Calgary since 1991. Having held many international fellowships and lectureships, she has dedicated much of her research, practice, and activism to internationally critical issues in human rights. She has published extensively and appeared as counsel in leading cases in the Supreme Court of Canada. She has also organized and participated in collaborative human rights and judicial education projects in Geneva, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia, Spain, Israel, China, Vietnam, the United States and the United Nations. She was a founder of the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund and a pioneer of the judicial education movement in Canada.

In 2004, Professor Mahoney spearheaded and authored a major research project and Report examining the Canadian government's response to the claims of Aboriginal residential school survivors. This led to her appointment as the Chief Negotiator for the Assembly of First Nations and the subsequent historic settlement agreement with Canada for reparations and a Truth and Reconciliation Process, which is unique in the world.

Among her many awards, Professor Mahoney was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and received the Canadian Bar Association Distinguished Service Award in 1997. In 1998, she was made a Fulbright Scholar to pursue her research work at Harvard University and was appointed by the Federal Cabinet to Chair the Board of Directors of the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development. In 2000, she won the Bertha Wilson Touchstone Award and in 2001, she was awarded the Governor General's medal.

She has law degrees from the University of British Columbia and Cambridge University, and a Diploma from the Institute of Comparative Human Rights Law in Strasbourg, France.

  • May 31, 2016
    Since Confederation in 1867, Canada has identified and conducted itself as a country of two founding nations, the British and the French, while subordinating the status of Indigenous peoples. A new project is seeking to alter that narrative through official recognition, on the 150th anniversary of the 1867 confederation, of the foundational contributions of Indigenous peoples to the formation of Canada, in addition to the British and the French.