Backgrounder: National Prosecution Awards 2022

The Commitment to Justice Award

Martin E. Herschorn, KC began his law career with the Nova Scotia Department of the Attorney General in 1972 upon his admission to the bar. His focus was on appellate practice and over the years he argued more than 300 appeals for the Crown. In 1980 he was appointed Assistant Director (Criminal Law) and later, Director (Criminal Law). He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1988. That same year he was appointed Chief Crown Attorney (Trials). In 1994, he was named Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions. He was acting Director of Public Prosecutions from 1994 to 1995 and again from 1998 to 2001 when he was appointed permanent Director. He retired in 2022 after 50 years of public service.

Mr. Herschorn played an active role in drafting the legislation in 1990 to create Canada’s first statutorily based independent Public Prosecution Service (PPS) in Nova Scotia. He led the PPS for 21 years overseeing substantial growth in the Service and navigating through a series of significant issues.

For the last 50 years, and most particularly in the last 21 years, Mr. Herschorn has been a dedicated leader in the Nova Scotia criminal justice system. He has stood up for Crown attorneys and has expertly navigated the PPS through various evolutions in criminal law practice and caselaw. He was also instrumental in establishing the Federal Provincial Territorial Heads of Prosecutions Committee and a long-serving member of the International Association of Prosecutors.

The Humanitarian Award

McFarlane (Marc) Chebesi Njoh is an African Canadian prosecutor with the Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Service. He is a lawyer, and also an author, facilitator, community organizer and entrepreneur. He was born in the Southern Cameroons and immigrated to Canada in 2006 where he completed his studies. He served as the inaugural president of the Association of Cameroonians in Nova Scotia, secretary general of the African Diaspora Association of the Maritimes, vice-president of the Dalhousie Law Students Association, board member of the Yarmouth Historical Society and board member of Ignite Labs Atlantic. In 2017 he was awarded the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society President’s Award for leadership in recognition of his community volunteer work and leadership.

Mr. Njoh spent the last semester of law school working at the Dalhousie Legal Aid Service where he also led an initiative called “Out of the Cold”, in which he led a group of law student volunteers to attend homeless shelters once a week and provide free legal information. As a young lawyer, he was at the forefront of humanitarian efforts and advocacy during the armed conflict in Cameroon, leading to the only international mediation process in place to end the conflict. He travelled to Geneva and Washington to engage in capacity building and mediation. He and another individual developed Peace Through Film, an initiative aimed at facilitating dialogue on the conflict. He’s also one of the key founders of Rescue Team International Society whose focus is to provide humanitarian assistance. He is also the author of a self-help book entitled “Stronger: 8 Steps to Evict Stagnation”.

Mr. Njoh is community-orientated and volunteers in various areas outside the profession and in the community. He sits on the Gender Equity Committee of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society and on the Lawyers Assistance Program Committee of the Society. He is also currently a volunteer member of the Hearing Committee of the Barristers’ Society and is active in the community at large, which brings a positive reflection on the prosecution function.

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Robert P. Doyle
Secretary, FPT Heads of Prosecutions Committee

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