Under section 10(1) of the Provincial Court Act, Associate Chief Judges are designated by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, usually for a term of three years, which may be renewed. Subject to the direction of the Chief Judge, an Associate Chief Judge has the same powers and duties as the Chief Judge.
Associate Chief Judge Susan Wishart
Associate Chief Judge Wishart obtained a Masters of Science degree from Queen’s University in 1990, followed by a law degree from the University of Victoria in 1994. She was called to the BC Bar in 1995. Her work as a lawyer was mainly in the area of criminal defence law. During her time as a lawyer Associate Chief Judge Wishart was active in the Canadian Bar Association. She chaired the Victoria criminal law section, was an elected member of Provincial Council, and an elected member of the Executive of the CBA - BC Branch.
Judge Wishart was appointed to the Provincial Court of British Columbia in March of 2009, serving Victoria, Duncan and the Western Communities. In November of 2014 she was elected president of the Provincial Court Judges’ Association and in that capacity served as a member of Judicial Council for the year 2015.
In May 2016 Judge Wishart was appointed Associate Chief Judge and in July 2016 she was appointed to Judicial Council. As Associate Chief Judge, she serves on various committees including access to justice initiatives, court technology, and business intelligence. She has participated in the development and implementation of changes to the Small Claims Rules and the Provincial Court Family Rules. She is also involved with the specialized courts across the province. Her appointment as Associate Chief Judge has been extended until May 2024.
Associate Chief Judge Paul Dohm
Associate Chief Judge Dohm graduated from the University of British Columbia with a law degree in 1989 and was called to the Bar in 1990. From May 1991 to May 1992 he held the position of legal counsel to the Commissioner of Industrial Relations Council. He then spent a year in private practice before joining Crown Counsel in October of 1993. Associate Chief Judge Dohm served as Crown Counsel in Vancouver and Administrative Crown Counsel in Nelson before returning to the Lower Mainland and working as a major crime prosecutor. He was appointed to the Provincial Court in December 2005. While he has sat primarily in Surrey, Abbotsford and Chilliwack since then, he has also travelled to and presided in many other court locations across BC.
Appointed Associate Chief Judge in November of 2018, Associate Chief Judge Dohm has administrative responsibilities in the areas of scheduling, regional operations, complaints, criminal law reform, the Judicial Justice Division, and the Justice Centre. He has been instrumental in developing the Court’s approach to Pre-Trial Conferences in criminal matters and is an integral member of the Court’s virtual bail and traffic court transformation projects. His appointment as Associate Chief Judge has been extended until November, 2023.