Derek Ross

Derek Ross

Executive Director, General Counsel, Christian Legal Fellowship

Derek B.M. Ross, LL.B. (Western), LL.M. (Toronto), is the Executive Director & General Counsel for Christian Legal Fellowship, where he oversees all aspects of the organization's operations, education and training programs, publications, and advocacy. He maintains a litigation practice with a focus on human rights and religious freedom, and has acted as lead or co-counsel for public interest interveners in 13 cases involving the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, including 5 before the Supreme Court of Canada. He has appeared before every level of court in Ontario, as well as the Courts of Appeal in British Columbia and Nova Scotia. He has also appeared before numerous legislative and Parliamentary committees to present submissions on constitutional and legal issues.

Mr. Ross previously served as Director of Legal Affairs for the Canadian Council of Christian Charities, Canada's largest association of religious organizations, where he served on the Canada Revenue Agency's Technical Issues Working Group and as the general editor of the Charities Handbook, 19th Edition (2014), a comprehensive legal guide for Canadian charities. Prior to that, he practiced civil litigation with a focus on public, education, and municipal law.

Mr. Ross has served as an Executive Member of the Charity and Not-for-Profit Law sections and the Constitutional, Civil Liberties, and Human Rights Law sections of both the Canadian Bar Association and the Ontario Bar Association. He regularly presents at legal conferences and law faculties on constitutional and charity law. He is editor-in-chief of the Christian Legal Journal, a quarterly periodical examining the relationship between law and religion. His writings have appeared in numerous publications, including Policy Options, Lawyer's Weekly, Canadian Lawyer, Montreal Gazette, Public Discourse, and the Chronicle-Herald.  His work has been cited in the Senate of Canada and several Parliamentary reports. He is the general editor of a forthcoming special edition of the Supreme Court Law Review (2018).

Mr. Ross spent his formative years growing up in Port Hedland, Australia, surrounded by the rugged beauty of the Pilbara Outback, and considers himself a Quasi-Aussie (he can still speak fluent Australian, if you ask him). As much as he loves his second Aussie home, he couldn’t be prouder to be a Canadian (and a Canadiens fan).