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She's bar none

Deputy minister of justice recognized for work

Christine Kay
Northern News Services

Iqaluit (Aug 19/02) - Nora Sanders is proud to bring her award back to Nunavut.

The deputy minister for the Department of Justice in Nunavut recently received the John Tait Award of Excellence. It is presented by the Canadian Bar Association and recognizes the Canadian lawyers.

"I found out about it six or seven weeks ago. I was excited and humbled at the same time given that it's a national thing," said Sanders.

She received the award at the CBA Public Sector Lawyers Conference in London, Ont., Aug. 12.

Over the years, Sanders has provided legal counsel to the Northwest Territories Department of Justice and served as the assistant minister of justice of the NWT. She was also the chair of the Board of Inquiry under the Police Services Act of Ontario.

In 1998, Sanders left the GNWT to become the first deputy minister of justice in Nunavut. Sanders said this move was the most important of her career.

"The biggest challenge I've had was helping to set up the Nunavut government. "I take a lot of pride in the part that I've had in setting up the Department of Justice," she said.

The John Tait Award comes as a statue of an inukshuk, which the CBA says is a symbol of showing the way.

It is carved by an Iqaluit woman, Mary Audla.

For Sanders, this award is a symbol of more than just her accomplishments.

"It's been very heartening. People are saying nice things, but I think it reflects the work so many of us are doing it Nunavut," she explained.

Sanders said the fact that the statue is from Nunavut and that it represents so many people in the territory makes the award even more special.