Hensel Barristers

Katherine Hensel

Principal, B.A., LLB

Katherine Hensel is the founder and principal lawyer at Hensel Barristers. Katherine is Secwepemc (Shuswap). Katherine was called to the bar in 2003. After commencing her practice at a large firm in Toronto, in 2004 she joined the Ipperwash Inquiry (an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of an Anishnaabek man, Dudley George), as Assistant Commission Counsel, and served the Commission in that capacity until the release of its report in 2007.

In 2007, Katherine joined a prominent litigation firm in Toronto, before leaving to establish Hensel Barristers in 2011.

Katherine has built a diverse practice focused on serving First Nations and their members. She has provided advice and acted in disputes concerning the assertion of Aboriginal and treaty rights, the duty to consult, commercial matters, public inquiries (including British Columbia's Missing and Murdered Women's Inquiry, as counsel for the Native Women's Association of Canada), child welfare matters, and select criminal cases.

In 2012, as co-counsel with Stockwoods LLP, Katherine successfully set aside the decision of the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs to appoint a Third Party Manager to Attawapiskat First Nation.

In 2013, Katherine was awarded the Minaake Award for Human Rights and Advocacy from the Native Women's Resource Centre. As well, she was the recipient of the 2013 Arleen Goss Young Advocates' Award.

Katherine is a member of the Indigenous Bar Association, the Advocates' Society and the Canadian Bar Association.