Drew holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in literature from the University of Victoria and a Master of Arts degree from the University of British Columbia. After spending a year in Ottawa working as a legislative assistant to a Member of Parliament, Drew realized he had made a terrible geographical mistake and returned to law school, and eventual practice, in Victoria, British Columbia.
Drew began working with Woodward and Company in January of 2004 as a co-op student and became partner in 2013. Along the way to finding out he was a lawyer, Drew was at times: a maid, a lifeguard, a park ranger, a shoe-maker’s assistant, an assistant epidemiologist, a teaching assistant, and writer/editor.
Drew is interested in developing strategic approaches to consultation and accommodation negotiations between First Nations and resource companies; in particular, he is looking at negotiation models being developed in the academic realm as means to assert and ensure that clients are meaningfully and effectively resourced to enter into fair negotiations.
His primary areas of practice are resource law, business associations, tax, trusts, contracts and Aboriginal rights and title. Drew’s goals include seeing Canada and its governments honour the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People through the recognition of First Nations decision-making power with respect to their traditional lands. He is extremely grateful and appreciative of the time his work affords him working with amazing, thoughtful and wise Elders from diverse communities.
* Denotes a law corporation.
Selected Presentations & Publications
“What the aboriginal title decision, Tsilhqot’in Nation, means for the oil and gas industry and Aboriginal groups in Alberta”, The Canadian Institute’s Environmental Law and Regulation in Alberta Conference, Calgary, AB, June 2, 2015.
“Protecting the Lands, Protecting the Waters: An Update on Aboriginal Title”, Friends of Clayoquot Sound, Tofino, BC February 25, 2015.
“Panel Discussion on the Supreme Court Ruling in Tsilhqot’in Nation”, Circle for Aboriginal Relations, Enoch, Alberta, September 14, 2014.
“How the Keewatin and Tsilhqot’in decisions impact consultation Requirements”, 6th NE Oil and Gas Summit, Insight – Wosk Centre for Dialogue, Vancouver BC, September 18, 2014.
“Implications of the Tsilhqot’in Nation vs. British Columbia Supreme Court of Canada Decision”, Canadian Institute Building Aboriginal Relationships in BC Conference, Vancouver, November 25, 2014.
“The Proof is in the Putting: Clam Gardens and Fish Weirs as Proof of Aboriginal Title”, co-authored with Murray Browne, International Congress of Ethnobiology, Tofino, BC, May 24, 2010.
“Oral History Evidence in the Tsilhqot’in Nation Case: Applicability to Evidence in Specific Claims”, National Specific Claims Workshop, Hosted by Stoney Nakoda Nation, Kananaskis, AB, October 17, 2008.
“TUS Use in Aboriginal Rights and Title Litigation and Strength of Claim Analysis in Crown Consultation and Accommodation Processes”, Northwest Coast Anthropologists Annual General Meeting, Victoria, BC, April 24, 2008.
“A Bad Connection: First Nations’ Oral Evidence and the Listening Ear of the Courts”, Aboriginal Oral Traditions: Theory, Practice, and Ethics, Gorsebrook Research Institute, St. Mary’s University, April 21-23, 2005.
“Archival Force: The Ethics of Consignation”, Legal Spaces: Annual Conference of the International Roundtable for the Semiotics of Law, McGill University, April 15-16, 2005.
Book Review of Oral History on Trial: Recognizing Aboriginal Narratives in the Courts by Bruce Granville Miller, Great Plains Research, Vol 22: 91 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska, 2012).
“A Bad Connection: First Nations Oral Histories in the Canadian Courts”, Aboriginal Oral Traditions: Theory, Practice, Ethics (Halifax: Fernwood Publishing, 2008).
Assistant: Lisa Spaven
Member, Law Society of British Columbia, 2007
Member, Law Society of Yukon, 2008
Director, Suddenly Dance
CBA Provincial Council Representative, Victoria County
Executive Member at Large, CBA National Aboriginal Law Section
Associate Member, Environmental Law Centre
Former Director, Victoria Cool Aid Society
Past Chair, CBA Vancouver Island Aboriginal Law Section