Skip to content

Queen’s counsel no more, B.C.’s best lawyers have a new distinction

King’s counsel (KC) replaces QC for lawyers recognized by their peers for exceptional merit
Britain’s King Charles III waves from the Buckingham Palace balcony after his coronation, in London, Saturday, May 6, 2023. (Leon Neal/Pool Photo via AP)

For the entire lives of every practising lawyer in British Columbia, there was an honour of distinction for exceptional contributions to the legal profession.

Lawyers recognized with the Queen’s counsel could put QC after their names and post-nominals on documents, a sign that they have been recognized by their peers for exceptional merit.

For 70 years from 1952 to Queen Elizabeth 2’s death in 2022, QC it was.

Now, with the ascension to the throne by Charles III, going forward that honour will be King’s counsel (KC).

READ MORE: King Charles III crowned in ancient rite at Westminster Abbey

Last week the Attorney General named 30 B.C. lawyers to be recognized with (KC).

Appointees include lawyers in private practice, government and academia who have distinguished themselves by their counsel, teaching contributions, publications, advocacy and volunteerism.

“The recipients of the honour of KC have made exemplary contributions to ensuring B.C. is a just and equitable place for everyone to live,” said Niki Sharma, Attorney General. “This is a highly coveted honour, particularly because the recipients are nominated by their peers.”

The King’s counsel designation grants each appointee the honour of adding the letters “KC” to their post-nominals (letters after one’s name).

To be considered for the King’s counsel designation, the potential candidates must be members of the B.C. bar for a minimum of five years. Their nomination is reviewed by an advisory committee, which then makes recommendations to the attorney general. The appointments are made by cabinet through orders in council.

The following King’s counsel appointees are listed chronologically by the date they were called to the bar:

William McLachlan (1975)

Don Sihota (1986)

Simon Buck (1987)

Cameron Belsher (1988)

Shafik Bhalloo (1990)

Rosanne Kyle (1993)

Brendan McCabe (1993)

Michael Libby (1994)

Joseph McArthur (1995)

Mark Underhill (1996)

Amy Mortimore (1998)

Stacey Ederza Fox (1999)

John Gareth Morley (1999

Mark Gervin (2000)

Marko Vesely (2000)

Li-Jeen Broshko (2002)

Peter Lawless (2002)

Sarah Westwood (2002)

Louise Jane Kenworthy (2004)

Karen Snowshoe (2004)

Brent Olthuis (2005)

Katrina Harry (2006)

Grace Pastine (2006)

Micah Rankin (2007)

Zara Suleman (2007)

Clare Jennings (2008)

Colleen Spier (2008)

Peter Senkpiel (2010)

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.