Legislative Assembly Unanimously Approves Appointments of Three Independent Officers
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, May 26, 2020 – The Office of the Speaker and the Clerks of the Legislative Assembly today confirmed in the 1st Session of the 66th General Assembly, unanimously approved a motion of the following three appointments for independent statutory officers by consensus in the House. These positions included the Auditor General, Child and Youth Advocate, and Information and Privacy Commissioner. These independent officers are non-partisan and serve important roles in assisting the Legislative Assembly in providing government oversight.
Today, the Members of the Legislative Assembly unanimously approved a motion to appoint Mr. Darren Noonan, CPA, CA, from Charlottetown as the Auditor General. Mr. Noonan takes over from long time Auditor General Ms. Jane MacAdam who provided much guidance and support to the position over many years. The Office of the Auditor General is responsible for leading independent audits and examinations that provide objective information, advice and assurance to the Legislative Assembly.
Darren has almost 30 years of combined experience in public practice and within the business community of Prince Edward Island. Darren worked in public practice for 16 years, having achieved partnership in his later years. He then joined an automotive dealership group in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia where he spent the last 13 years as a partner/operator.
Darren has served as President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Prince Edward Island and the Prince Edward Island Automobile Dealers Association and has contributed to numerous non-profit organizations, community groups, and industry associations over the years.
Darren obtained his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Prince Edward Island in 1990, and received his Chartered Accountant designation from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Prince Edward Island in 1992.
Child and Youth Advocate
The Legislative Assembly unanimously approved a motion to appoint the Child and Youth Advocate who was confirmed as Mr. Marvin M. Bernstein, B.A., J.D., LL.M. (ADR) currently based in Toronto, to serve as a voice for Island children and youth to ensure that their interests and well-being are respected in government practice, policy and legislation.
Mr. Bernstein has vast knowledge and experience that has prepared him for this new role for Prince Edward Island and is currently a Child Rights/Child Advocacy and Child Welfare Consultant. The Child and Youth Advocate Office will promote and protect the rights of children and youth and provide independent oversight of government-funded programs that serve children and youth in the province.
Marvin has decades of relevant experience both professionally and personally. He is very passionate about improving the life conditions of children and youth and also about child rights advocacy, with the goal of ensuring that the fundamental human rights and dignity of all children and youth are respected everywhere.
Throughout his professional career, he has held many roles, including that of Children’s Advocate for the Province of Saskatchewan while also having substantial experience in child welfare, policy, government/stakeholder relations, management, alternative dispute resolution and communications/media relations. Mr. Bernstein is an experienced lawyer, who has a Bachelor of Arts, a Juris Doctor and a Master of Laws in Alternative Dispute Resolution.
Mr. Bernstein’s volunteer life reflects his passion for child and youth advocacy. He is currently a member of the Executive of the Canadian Bar Association’s national Child and Youth Law Section; an Executive member of the Canadian Bar Association’s national United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) Committee; and Vice-Chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s provincial Child and Youth Law Section. He is currently Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto and a member of the Ontario Children in Limbo Task Force and the Child Rights Academic Network.
Marvin has received several honours and awards related to his child and youth advocacy. He has been awarded the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and also is the recipient of both the Child Welfare League of Canada Advocacy Award and the North America Council on Adoptable Children Adoption Activist Award.
Information and Privacy Commissioner
The appointment of Information and Privacy Commissioner was confirmed as Ms. Denise Doiron, BSc. LLB, from Charlottetown. Ms. Doiron will replace Ms. Karen Rose who served in this invaluable role since June 22, 2015. The Information and Privacy Commissioner upholds the public’s right to access government held information and access to their own personal information, while ensuring that personal information held by public institutions remains private and secure. The Information and Privacy Commissioner is now also responsible for the Health Information Act, as well as FOIPP.
Ms. Doiron has more than 22 years of legal practice experience, and a member in good standing with the Law Society of Prince Edward Island since December 1997.
Over the past 22 years, Denise has served as legal counsel within the PEI Provincial Government and has represented most levels and areas of the PEI Provincial Government, including programs, departments, administrative tribunals, and Crown Corporations. Currently, she is acting in the role of general/corporate counsel to Health PEI, providing a full range of solicitor services in all areas of law as required. Denise has practiced in most areas of law, including but not limited to administrative law and access to information and protection of privacy matters and in addition, she has expertise in the interpretation and application of statutory law and common law.
During her career she has also had the opportunity to regularly be involved in the development of policies for a variety of different departments, programs and agencies within government, and the development of, and amendments to, numerous pieces of legislation and regulations over the years, as well as interpretation and application of many different types of legislation.
Director of Communications and External Relations
Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island