VANCOUVER, Nov. 24, 2011 /CNW/ - Davis LLP is pleased to announce that
Barry Penner, Q.C., will be joining the firm as Senior Counsel after a
distinguished career of more than 15 years serving the province of
British Columbia. Mr. Penner was elected to the Legislative Assembly
four times and currently represents the constituency of
Chilliwack-Hope. He will have primary responsibility for the
development and growth of Davis' environmental and renewable-energy
practice in B.C., and will also assist with the growth of these
practices in the rest of Canada and internationally.
"Mr. Penner has had an exemplary career in B.C. politics," says Robert
Seidel, Q.C., Firm Managing Partner of Davis LLP. "His long-standing
interest and experience in environmental and renewable-energy matters
will complement the firm's leading project-development and
Prior to becoming Attorney General and Minister of Aboriginal Relations
& Reconciliation in 2010, Mr. Penner served as B.C.'s Minister of
Environment from 2005 to 2010, making him the longest-serving
environment minister in provincial history. He has extensive knowledge
of the public-policy issues and permitting processes impacting B.C.
project proponents. During his tenure, he was involved in a number of
significant, innovative initiatives, including B.C.'s renewable-energy
legislation - considered one of the leading examples of such
legislation in the world.
"I am eager to tackle this new challenge in my career, and I'm looking
forward to working with a full-service, highly-regarded firm like Davis
LLP," said Penner. "Davis has played an important role in the history
of British Columbia, growing from its local roots to become a leading
national and international law firm."
Mr. Penner is the second former Attorney General of British Columbia to
join the firm - the first was Allan Williams, Q.C. who joined the firm
when he left politics in 1983. He passed away earlier this year.
While heading up the Environment Ministry, Mr. Penner was responsible
for the Environmental Assessment Office, which reviewed and approved
billions of dollars of investment in new projects following
comprehensive environmental assessments, including major expansions to
hydro-electric facilities, transmission lines, BC's first wind-power
projects, small hydro-electric projects, mines and port facilities. Mr.
Penner's accomplishments in office include:
leading the BC Government's response to the Sumas Energy 2 (SE2) power
plant, which would have added 2.5 tonnes of particulate matter every
day into the air of his constituency in the Fraser Valley, and
championing renewable alternatives to meet growing energy demands;
introducing legislation expanding B.C.'s parks and protected areas by
1.63 million hectares (4 million acres) - the largest protected area
network in Canada; and
strengthening BC's Wildlife Act to provide the toughest penalties in
In 2010, Mr. Penner was referred to as "one of the most credible
[cabinet] ministers" in British Columbia by Vancouver Magazine when he
received the "Power 50" award. A former President of the Pacific
Northwest Economic Region (a consortium of legislators and
private-sector business leaders in five U.S. states, three Canadian
provinces and two territories), Mr. Penner was named to the "Order of
the Smashed Brick" by the Canadian Consulate in Seattle, Washington for
his diplomacy in working to reduce tensions and barriers between Canada
and the United States.
Davis LLP was founded in British Columbia in 1892 and has grown to
become a national and international firm on its own terms, with over
240 lawyers in seven Canadian cities and Tokyo - the only Canadian law
firm with an office in Japan. The firm is a leader in the Canadian
public-infrastructure sector and with a 100-plus year pedigree in the
natural-resource sector and a strong energy and power-generation
Mr. Penner will officially join Davis LLP early in the new year.