|Honorary Degree Recipient, Chief Justice Edward D. Bayda, May 24, 1989 (Photograph Collection, A-7958)|
Convocation date: May 24, 1989
Discipline / contribution: jurisprudence ; community service
Citation / biographical information:
Eminent Chancellor, on behalf of the Council and Senate, I present to you Edward Dmytro Bayda.Degree received: Doctor of Laws
For Chief Justice Bayda, the road to the helm of what under his presidency has come to be one of the most respected Courts of Appeal in Canada began in Alvena, Saskatchewan. There this son of a farmer turned implement dealer and hardware merchant began his schooling, which he completed at City Park Collegiate in Saskatoon before entering the University of Saskatchewan. Obtaining a B.A. Degree in philosophy and political science in 1951, he graduated in law with the degree of LL.B. (cum laude) two years later.
During the ensuing two decades of private practice Chief Justice Bayda provided leadership and rendered service in community organizations, and in the legal profession: as president of the Regina Bar Association, chairman of the Civil Justice Section of the provincial branch of the Canadian Bar Association, and as a bencher of the Law Society of Saskatchewan. He was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1966, the same year in which he became senior partner in the firm of Bayda, Halvorsen, Scheibel and Thompson. Judicial appointment, to the Court of Queen's Bench, came in 1972. Elevation to the Court of appeal was swift, occurring in 1974, only months after appointment as one of the inaugural members of the newly created Law Reform Commission of Saskatchewan.
To these weighty responsibilities was added, in the same year, that of a federal commission to investigate the complexities of labor-management relations in the Vancouver grain-handling industry, there following in 1977-78 the provincial Cluff Lake Enquiry. In the report of that commission, His Lordship insisted that if development of the rich northern uranium deposits was to go ahead there must be strict rules for environmental safety and for assuring to northern residents a fair share of employment opportunities.
The then Mr. Justice Bayda succeeded Hon. E.M. Culliton as Chief Justice of Saskatchewan in 1981. Early in his tenure of that position there devolved upon the Canadian judiciary no less a task than demarcating, through interpretation and application of the Charter of Rights, the extent to which the state might lawfully trench upon individual freedom. In liberally-orientated judgments lauded for their scholarship, sensitivity and elegant lucidity, Chief Justice Bayda is making a distinctive imprint on Charter jurisprudence, and has earned himself an enduring place among the nation's pre-eminent jurists.
It is with pride that his alma mater today honours a great Saskatchewanian and a great Canadian.
Eminent Chancellor, I present to you Edward Dmytro Bayda and ask that you will confer on him the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.
Degree presented by: D.H. Clark, professor of Law
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