Become a Bencher

2020 Bencher Election – Important Dates

Voting Polls Open – Monday, April 20

Election Results Announced – Wednesday, May 6

Who Qualifies to Run as a Candidate?

A candidate for election as a Bencher must:

  • Be a practising lawyer on Monday, March 2, 2020 and be on the voters’ list on Monday, April 6, 2020;
  • Maintain his or her principal office in the Electoral District in which he or she seeks to be a candidate;
  • Consent in writing to the nomination;
  • Be nominated in accordance with the process set out in Division 2 of Part 2 of the Law Society Rules; and
  • Not be a Life Bencher or an Ex-Officio Bencher.

Governing Legislation For Bencher Elections

Sections 5 through 10 of The Legal Profession Act and Division 2 of Part 2 of the Law Society Rules govern the election of Benchers. The Law Society Vice-President decides questions about the eligibility of any candidate and the validity of any nomination or vote cast.

Listen to what Anita Southall President of the Law Society has to say about her experience being a bencher.

If you have any questions about running in this election, please contact any one of the following:

Kristin Dangerfield, Chief Executive
Leah Kosokowsky, Director |
Anita Southall,
Lynda Troup, Vice-President
Kathy Bueti, Past

Bencher Positions

Elected Positions

Elections for 12  Bencher positions are held every second year. To be eligible as a candidate for election, a member of the society must be a practising lawyer on the 1st Monday in March of the election year, maintain a principal office in the district in which he or she seeks to be a candidate and must be nominated in accordance with the rules.

Appointed Positions

Following the election, a call for applications will be made to both the profession and the public.  The appointment process ensures that applicants with unique skill sets and abilities and from diverse backgrounds are eligible for appointment.

Practising Lawyer Benchers

Four lawyers are appointed, to serve for a two year term. At least one of the lawyers must be from the Winnipeg District and one must be from outside of Winnipeg.

Lay Benchers

Six public representatives are appointed for a two year term in each election year by a Committee chaired by the Chief Justice of the Province of Manitoba.