Denis Blanchette is a partner in Gowling WLG's Montréal office, practising in public law, with a focus on Aboriginal law, governance, the administration of justice, the protection of the environment and resource development.
Denis works on the implementation of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement, the Eeyou Marine Region Land Claims Agreement and the Agreement on Governance in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay Territory. He is currently involved in governance negotiations between the Crees of Eeyou Istchee and the Government of Canada and he took part in the negotiation of the Eeyou Marine Region Land Claims Agreement and the Agreement on Governance in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay Territory. He is also involved in various initiatives concerning federal and provincial legislative reforms, government relations and policy.
Since 2010, Denis is a Cree Nation Government appointed member of the Cree-Québec Judicial Advisory Committee. This committee was established pursuant to the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement to advise the Government of Quebec and the Cree Nation Government with respect to the administration of justice for the Crees of Eeyou Istchee. Denis works closely with the Cree Nation Government Department of Justice and Correctional Services on various initiatives related to the administration of justice for the Crees.
Denis practises law in English and French and is fluent in Spanish.
Before joining Gowling WLG, Denis was a law clerk to Justice Peter Cory at the Supreme Court of Canada. He was also involved with international organizations in Africa and Latin America where he lived for many years. He participated in the implementation and management of various projects involving institutional reforms, the justice system and human rights. Through these projects, Denis worked in close collaboration with Penal Reform International, the Inter-American Institute for Human Rights (IIDH) and the United Nations Latin-American Institute for the Prevention of Crime (ILANUD). He also took part in several humanitarian relief missions in Liberia, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Djibouti with Médecins Sans Frontières.