For a 6th consecutive year in a row, Canadian Lawyer Magazine has published its “Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers in Canada” and Pascale Fournier features in it! Nominated in the “World Stage” Category, which celebrates the influence of Canadian lawyers on the international scene, Professor Fournier was selected for her humanitarian involvement and the large scope of her academic contributions beyond Canadian borders. The selection committee used the following criteria: “We have endeavoured to select the most influential within the law over the last 18 years, looking at every area of practice. It’s about respect, ability to influence public opinion, and help shape the laws of the country; contribution to the strength and quality of legal services; and social and political influence and involvement.” A video presents the 25 profils chosen by their peers !
With passion and rigour, Professor Fournier continues her ethnographic work to better understand the impact of religious family law on women from all over the globe. Her endeavour is now informed by a decade of encounters with Muslim, Jewish and Christian women of various ethnic backgrounds that allowed her to carefully study their navigation of competing normative systems. The interviews were successfully conducted in several countries, including Canada, France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Palestine, Lebanon and Israel. She currently undertakes research projects that focus primarily on children, more specifically the extent to which their interests are shaped and influenced by the multiple interactions of civil family law and religious rules. The dialogue between religious law and state law generates its share of complexities and ambiguities, which are rarely captured by a rigid and positivist conception of law. Desirous to maximize her academic contribution and to deepen our comprehension of these significant legal issues, Professor Fournier is committed to better defining the impact of this normative and legal pluralism on the interests of women and children.
This distinction beautifully adds to a year of numerous accomplishments and prestigious awards under the sign of internationality for Professor Fournier. Invited to join the International Women’s Forum, she integrated a network of 36 women from 14 countries who are considered leaders in their respective fields and with whom she had the opportunity to exchange at length during three summits, namely at Harvard Business School (Massachusetts), INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France) and Atlanta (Georgia). Her research concerning women of all heritages was also formally recognized by the Canada-Arab Chamber of Commerce, when it awarded her its Special Achievement Award for “Excellence and Humanitarian Contribution.” Most recently, she was unanimously appointed by the Quebec National Assembly as a Commissioner to the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse (CDPDJ); within this new mandate, Professor Fournier tackles once more national and international issues of human rights. Not to forget that Pascale Fournier has added a string to her bow as she comes back profoundly transformed from her participation as a delegate to the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conference, where she explored the wonders of the Northwest Territories and discussed Canada’s role in terms of leadership and innovation.