762 THE ADVOCATE
VOL. 78 PART 5 SEPTEMBER 2020
als of African-Canadian descent in North Vancouver. Growing up biracial
enhanced his understanding and perspective on both racialized and white
Canadians and the complexities of issues surrounding tolerance and racism
in Canada. This background is perhaps one of the reasons that, throughout
his legal career, Andrew has demonstrated empathy and understanding for
people from all ethnic, socio-economic and racial backgrounds, whether
they are friends, colleagues, clients or opposing counsel.
Andrew’s life was also significantly influenced by his mother’s struggles
with mental illness. She was a lovely, loving and fun-filled mother, but
because she suffered from bipolar disorder, during his teenage years,
Andrew was often required to support, protect and care for her. As an adult,
however, he turned these challenges of his youth into a benefit for others.
He became the national mental health ambassador for the DOJ British
Columbia Regional Justice Mental Health Strategy and worked tirelessly
with managers and employees to increase awareness of the importance of
mental health and wellness in the workplace and at home. He remains passionate
about reducing the stigma associated with mental health issues and
ensuring that those who suffer from mental illness have access to the
resources they need. Undoubtedly, his enhanced understanding of the
impact of mental illness on individuals, society and the legal system is a
unique and important element he will bring to his courtroom.
Andrew grew up on the North Shore and attended Handsworth Secondary
before heading to Kingston, Ontario to study psychology and politics at
Queen’s University. It may be that his first real introduction to law and
order was working as a student constable at Queen’s. Student constables are
responsible for keeping the peace and policing university events. It sounds
like a heavy mantle bestowed on only the most mature and law-abiding students.
However, as Queen’s graduates will know, one of the main attractions
to the job is that a student constable attends university parties and
social events free of charge, shows up early and stays long after the events
close to other students. An undeniably more significant and lasting benefit
to Andrew of being a student constable was that it was at one such event
where he met his future wife, Candice. The two have been married for 20
years, and her unwavering support and ability to keep him grounded have
allowed him to pursue the opportunities that ultimately led to his appointment.
Candice herself is professionally accomplished and was a highly
respected elementary school teacher for more than 20 years and recently
embarked on a new career as a school counsellor after returning to university
to obtain her master’s degree in counselling psychology.
Calling Andrew’s rise through the ranks of the legal profession “meteoric”
may underestimate the speed of his progression. After spending four years