Law Offices of Joanne Willis Newton
A Professional Corporation
Résumé
JOANNE WILLIS NEWTON
ATTORNEY AT LAW
13223-1 Black Mountain Rd., #284
San Diego, CA  92129
Tel. (800) 690-1558
Tel./Fax: (760) 553-9473
jwn@willisnewtonlaw.com
EDUCATION                LL.M. COMPARATIVE LAW (cum laude)
                              University of San Diego, 1997-98

                              LL.B. (cum laude)
                              University of Ottawa, 1989-1992

                              B.A. PSYCHOLOGY (magna cum laude)
                              University of Ottawa, 1988-89

                              B.SC. BIOLOGY (cum laude)
                              University of Ottawa, 1985-88
                                       
MEMBERSHIPS           THE STATE BAR OF CALIFORNIA
                              Admitted 1999

                              BARREAU DU QUÉBEC
                              Admitted 1998

                              THE LAW SOCIETY OF UPPER CANADA
                              Admitted 1995 - 2015 (Surrendered in Good Standing)

EXPERIENCE         JOANNE WILLIS NEWTON, ATTORNEY AT LAW
    October 2005 - present
    I have a general practice with a specialization in federal Indian law and
    juvenile dependency appeals,which I initially operated as a sole practitioner
    and, since May 2007, now operate as the Law Offices of Joanne Willis
    Newton, a Professional Corporation.  My clients include tribal agencies,
    namely, tribal gaming agencies and a tribal court, as well as individuals in
    matters involving federal Indian law and/or state law.  I also served as
    General Counsel to a Canadian First Nation.  In addition to providing legal
    services for clients, I also provide community education services and have
    given numerous presentations relating to the Indian Child Welfare Act to
    attorneys, judges, social workers and other tribal and county
    representatives.

                             CALIFORNIA INDIAN LEGAL SERVICES
                            
Directing Attorney, July 2003 - November 2004
             Senior Staff Attorney, 2001 – September 2005
             Staff Attorney, August 1998 - 2000

    As a staff attorney, I provided legal services to California Tribes and Native
    American individuals, including: legal research and analysis of Native law
    issues relating to environmental protection, child welfare, cultural resource
    protection, self-government, education rights, gaming, etc.; drafting related
    legal memoranda, pleadings, contracts, by-laws, ordinances and
    resolutions; litigation, including appellate experience; negotiation; client
    interviews; and community education.

    As Directing Attorney, I managed the entire staff of the Escondido office.  
    In addition to supervising the day-to-day administrative matters involved in
    operating the office, I actively managed the legal work in the office
    through case reviews, case acceptance meetings, mentoring junior
    attorneys, and directly supervising our intake system.  I was also
    responsible for networking with other legal services and for client
    development, while maintaining the full caseload of a staff attorney.

    CREE NATION OF CHISASIBI
    Attorney, 2002-2003
    As an independent contractor, I carried out several projects on behalf of
    the Cree Nation of Chisasibi and related entities, including:  analysis and
    revision of personnel policies and procedures for Chisasibi Centre Inc.;
    drafted personnel policies and procedures for Chisasibi Co-op; analyzed
    and revised existing by-laws; consulted with members of Chisasibi Police
    and Band Council and developed recommendations for local alcohol
    regulation.

    GRAND COUNCIL OF THE CREES OF EEYOU ISTCHEE
    Attorney, 2000
    As an employee of California Indian Legal Services, I worked with the
    Cree Nation Government Working Group, which was tasked with
    developing a new self government model for the Eeyou Nation, and
    prepared a report summarizing the legal context in which Aboriginal self-
    government has evolved, describing specific Aboriginal government models
    from around the globe, and exploring the applicability of such models to
    the Eeyou Nation

    JAMES BAY CREE CULTURAL EDUCATION CENTER
    Corporate Secretary, January 1996-August 1997
    I was responsible for: researching corporate records and applicable
    legislation; drafting by-laws, resolutions and minutes; updating and
    maintaining corporate records; organizing meetings; preparing briefs;
    consultations with directors and staff.
                           
    Administrative Assistant/Researcher, 1986-1995
    I assisted the Executive Director in the general administration of the Center
    and worked on specific projects, including: archival research; cataloguing
    reference materials; authored and designed three children’s books; drafted
    declaration of Cree Language Rights and copyright contract; and edited and
    designed Cree Language Study.

    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE CANADA, CANADIAN FIREARMS
    CENTER
    Core Materials Writer, January 1997 - April 1998
    I specialized in legal and Aboriginal issues, developing core training
    materials on the Firearms Act and its regulations for those involved in the
    administration, implementation and enforcement of the legislation.
                           
    Analyst, Aboriginal Issues Unit, April - December 1996
    I worked on consultations with Aboriginal communities on the
    implementation of the Firearms Act and the development of Aboriginal
    regulations under the Act and assisted counsel with developing regulations
    and resolving other legal issues.

    DEPARTMENT OF INDIAN AFFAIRS AND NORTHERN
    DEVELOPMENT
    Researcher/Writer, 1994-1996
    I drafted chapters of a policy manual dealing with the management of
    reserve lands, which also involved extensive research of applicable policy
    and law and consultations with departmental staff.

    NAHWEGAHBOW, HAWKEN
    Researcher/Writer, 1995
    I provided legal research and writing services, as an independent
    contractor, in respect of various files relating to the affairs of the
    Wemindji, Chisasibi and Whapmagoostui Cree Nations.
                           
    CREE SCHOOL BOARD
    Researcher/Writer, 1993-95
    I revised existing general by-law of the Board and drafted a new by-law
    concerning delegation of powers, which involved extensive research of
    applicable laws, collective agreements and internal documents as well as
    consultations with senior and management staff and presentations to the
    Council of Commissioners.  I also wrote a report on the history of formal
    Cree education, covering the period up until the signing of the James Bay
    and Northern Quebec Agreement.

    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE CANADA
    Articling Student, 1993-94
    I articled in four sections of the Department, including Department of
    Indian Affairs and Northern Development Legal Services, the
    Administrative Law Section, Civil Litigation, and the Human Rights Law
    Section.  This work involved legal research, analysis and writing, as well
    as observing counsel before various court proceedings, negotiations,
    interviews and other meetings.

    UNIVERSITY OF OTTAWA LEGAL AID SOCIETY
    Member of Landlord Tenant Division, 1991-92
    Under counsel’s supervision, I interviewed clients, provided legal advice,
    managed files, drafted legal documents, negotiated settlements and
    performed the groundwork for the establishment of a new division serving
    Native clientele.


OTHER EXPERIENCE AND SKILLS
  • member of Cree Nation of Chisasibi
  • panel attorney with Appellate Defenders, Inc. since November 2005 and California
    Appellate Project Los Angeles since 2014
  • member of the San Diego County Bar Association, Native American Lawyers
    Association and California Indian Law Association
  • member of the Board of Directors of California Indian Law Association, 2004-2010
  • editor of California Indian Law Association's annual newsletter, 2007-2010
  • active member of the Indigenous Law Students Assoc., University of Ottawa, 1991-92
© 2005-2016 Joanne Willis Newton