by Colene A. Penn [GIS]
His Excellency the Governor, Mr. John S. Duncan, OBE, acting in accordance with the Legal Professions Act, 2015 has appointed Mrs. Dancia Penn, OBE, QC to chair the newly established Virgin Islands General Legal Council.
Mrs. Penn was nominated by the Chief Justice, Her Ladyship, the Honourable Madam Justice Dame Janice George Pereira as stipulated in the Legal Professions Act.
Mrs. Dancia Penn, Attorney at Law is a former Attorney General and past Deputy Governor of the Virgin Islands. The other members appointed to the seven-member body are Mrs. Kimberly Crabbe-Adams and Mr. Richard May, who were both nominated by the BVI Bar Association; Mr. Meade Malone who was nominated by the Premier and Mr. Jamal Smith who was nominated by the Leader of the Opposition.
The Attorney General and the President of the BVI Bar Association will serve as ex officio members of the council.
The Legal Professions Act was passed in the House of Assembly on March 25, 2015 and came into force on November 11, last year. The Chairman and members of the Council have been appointed to serve for three years effective December 30, 2015.
The powers and functions of the Council are to regulate and supervise the legal profession and to evaluate, review and set the standards of conduct and proficiency of the legal profession.
The Council will also make rules for the examination as it sees fit for a person to pass before being admitted and enrolled as a legal practitioner among other responsibilities.