Jay Chalke, Ombudsperson

James (Jay) Michael Chalke, Q.C., possesses an extensive background in executive leadership, the conduct of fair and independent investigations, and the use of modern approaches to dispute resolution.

Chalke has served as Assistant Deputy Minister, Justice Services Branch, in the Ministry of Justice (formerly the Ministry of Attorney General) since 2011, with responsibilities for delivering reforms to justice services, and fostering dialogue and collaboration across the justice system. With a focus on citizens’ access to justice, he has overseen the operation of legal aid and family maintenance enforcement programs, and a province-wide network of family justice offices and Justice Access Centres, which help members of the public resolve family and civil legal issues.

Prior to his appointment with the Ministry of Justice, Chalke was the first Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia from 2000 to 2011. During this time, he was instrumental in implementing lasting changes to modernize service delivery, improve collaboration with stakeholders, and enhance public accountability. He was also a member of Canada’s delegation to the Hague Conference on Private International Law, which negotiated the Convention on the Protection of Adults.

Earlier in his career, Chalke held a variety of public sector positions, including Deputy Public Trustee of British Columbia, Deputy Public Guardian and Trustee of Ontario, Head of the Review of Certain Practices in New Brunswick Correctional Institutions, Senior Policy Advisor for justice policy in the government of Ontario’s Cabinet Office, and Crown Counsel with the Ontario Ministry of Attorney General. He began his career as a Correctional and Psychiatric Services Investigator with the Ombudsman of Ontario.

Chalke is a member of the Justice and Public Safety Council of British Columbia, and a Governor of the Law Foundation of British Columbia. He is a member of the Law Society of British Columbia, and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2006, in recognition of his exceptional leadership and contributions to the legal profession and community.

Chalke obtained a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Ottawa in 1982, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Western Ontario (now Western University) in 1979. He completed the French Immersion program at Collège universitaire de Saint-Boniface in 1984.

Chalke was appointed Ombudsperson for the Province of British Columbia on May 26, 2015 for a six-year term starting July 1, 2015.

Mr. Chalke is married and has four adult children.