Judge remembered as dedicated, understanding

by Phil Ambroziak

Meadow Lake’s legal community was stunned last week with the sudden passing of Judge William (Bill) Campbell.

Mr. Campbell, who was appointed as a provincial court judge in Meadow Lake in October 2012, died Dec. 19. He was 52.

“For Bill to be appointed as a judge was the culmination of a brilliant legal career,” remarked Meadow Lake’s senior Crown prosecutor Gregory Lyndon. “This news was both sudden and unexpected. It’s a real tragedy for the legal community and for the Northwest because he truly understood the people of the North and was really thriving in his role.”

A graduate of the University of Saskatchewan, Mr. Campbell was admitted to the bar in 1985. During his 28-year career, he served the communities of Swift Current, Maple Creek, Moose Jaw, Regina and Meadow Lake. He left private practice in 1992 to join the public prosecutions division of the Ministry of Justice where he held various positions including regional Crown prosecutor in Meadow Lake from October 1993 to March 2008.

He also served as director of the high-risk offender unit and as the National Flagging System coordinator for Saskatchewan where he was one of 15 coordinators from across the country responsible for all aspects of management of high-risk violent offender prosecutions.

“We are all deeply saddened by Judge Campbell’s death,” stated Judge Earl Kalenith on behalf of himself and his colleague Judge Don Bird. “He was a kind and gentle man, a wonderful colleague, and an outstanding judge. This is a great loss to the provincial court in Meadow Lake, the province and to the administration of justice. It was our privilege to work with him and learn from him in this period, which was so sadly short.”

Throughout his career, Mr. Campbell also made continual efforts to enhance his legal education by completing a variety of courses related to litigation and criminal law. Most recently, he replaced Judge Jeremy Nightingale who retired in 2012.

“Bill was a long-time Meadow Lake resident, probably having spent the better part of 15 years here,” Lyndon said. “He was a lawyer’s lawyer, he cared for the law and for his profession. He also had empathy for people, as could be seen in his courtroom dealings. He is truly going to be missed.”

These thoughts were echoed by Tony Gerein, a friend of Mr. Campbell and one of his colleagues from his time at the Ministry of Justice.

“Bill was an outstanding lawyer and an outstanding person,” Gerein said. “He understood we’re here to serve, and he lived his life doing so.”

Mr. Campbell is survived by his wife, Karleen and his son, Andrew.

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