Biography

Hi, my name is Kyla Lee and I have been practicing law in BC for the past nine years now. I am passionate about what I do and focused my practice on defence of driving-related offences. I am Métis and proud of my heritage.

In the famous words of Chumbawumba’s Tubthumpin’, I get knocked down, but I get up again. And here I am running for Bencher again.

This election will be my eighth time running to be Bencher in Vancouver, so that should say something about my willingness to keep fighting for a cause.

Despite these setbacks, I have persisted and will continue to stand up for what I believe in.

I am a member of the Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia (TLABC) Board of Governors, and serve on the Criminal Law and Public Affairs Committees. I am also on the Editorial Board of their quarterly journal, the Verdict. 

 I represent the CBA on the Criminal Law Section executive, in addition to being on the Board of Directors for the BC Civil Liberties Association. Internationally, I represent the CLE as Co-Chair and am on the Board of Directors for the DUI Defense Lawyers Association (DUIDLA).

I am a National Ambassador to the Universal Women’s Network, a platform that works to advance gender equality in every aspect of life, worldwide.

In 2019, I was recognized as one of the Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers in Canada and awarded the Universal Women’s Network Indigenous Leader Award. I was named the recipient of the DUIDLA BadAss award.

In 2020, I was named a regional finalist in the RBC Women Entrepreneur Awards.

During the pandemic, I expanded my horizons and wrote two textbooks I am very proud of. They were published by LexisNexis, one titled Cross-Examination: The Pinpoint Method, and the second one Immediate Roadside Prohibitions in Western Canada.

Selected Awards

Universal Women’s Network 2019 Indigenous Leader Award

Awarded to an inspiring woman of Indigenous descent who serves as a role model to the community and to women at large. This award helped me to reconcile the guilt that I have in practicing in an area that is not Indigenous-related, as I sometimes feel shame for not directly serving my community. But part of reconciliation is allowing Indigenous people and Indigenous women more opportunities, and this award helped me to realize that by being Indigenous and working as a role model in what I love to do, I am a leader for my community.

DUIDLA BadAss Award 2019

This award is the highest honour bestowed by the DUI Defence Lawyers Association. It recognizes outstanding achievements in DUI Defence and general badassery. The DUIDLA is one of my favourite organizations to be involved with, as it is so welcoming and engaging. When I first joined, I was shy and afraid of connecting with other people, and so to have been awarded this after several years in the organization recognizes the growth that I have had in confidence as a lawyer and a person.

Canadian Lawyer Magazine Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers in Canada 2019

This is a national award issued yearly to lawyers who have changed or influenced the legal landscape in Canada. 2019 was a major year for change of DUI law in Canada, and I worked very hard to advocate to government, the senate, and in the media against changes that impacted my clients’ rights. I was ecstatic that my advocacy efforts were recognized in this way.

The Expert Institute 2018 Best Legal Blog Award – 3rd Place

Universal Women’s Network 2019 Indigenous Leader Award

DUIDLA BadAss Award 2019

Canadian Lawyer Magazine Top 25 Most In^luential Lawyers in Canada 2019

Corporate Vision Magazine Canadian Business Awards: Best Criminal Defence Firm

Corporate Vision Magazine Canadian Business Awards: Leading IRP Lawyer BC

CLawbies Best Overall Social Media 2020

CLawbies Best Video Series 2019

Western Canada Finalist: RBC Women of Influence Awards 2020

Corporate LiveWire Global Awards, Criminal Defence Lawyer of the Year 2020/2021

Global Business Insight Awards – Most Outstanding Criminal Defence Law Firm – BC

Global Business Insight AwardsLeading Immediate Roadside Prohibition Lawyer – BC

Lectures Given

Impaired Driving and Driving While Prohibited – Bi-annually UBC Indigenous Community Legal Clinic, Vancouver, BC

Violation Ticket and Immediate Roadside Prohibition Police Mistakes – February, 2019 Deas Island Traffic Services and Surrey RCMP, Surrey, BC

I presented several times to train students at the UBC Indigenous Community Legal Clinic on impaired driving and driving while prohibited cases. Volunteering my time with community organizations that train or support Indigenous people in the legal sphere is critical to me as an Indigenous lawyer.

Even though I am a defence lawyer, I still believe that I have a role in the larger administration of justice in Canada. I help to train police officers by lecturing on several occasions to police in the Lower Mainland on how to properly investigate impaired driving, prepare IRP disclosure and evidence, and how to prosecute traffic tickets successfully.

Hindsight is 2020: What I wish I knew about Social Media – May, 2020 Criminal Lawyers Association, Toronto, ON

Success Summit: Women-Owned and Women-Led Panel – June, 2020 Universal Women’s Network, Online

I was asked by the Criminal Lawyers Association in Ontario to present with renowned lawyer Allison Craig about social media in the legal profession, ethics and professionalism on social media, and how to successfully use social media in your practice.

This was a roundtable discussion between successful women who run or own businesses, talking about some of the challenges we face, overcoming adversity, what we do to plan for success for the future, and how to handle day-to-day stresses and balance work-life obligations.

Managing Trial Stress – September, 2020 Canadian Defence Lawyers, Online

In conjunction with the Canadian Defence Lawyers, I was asked to speak on a panel of prolific litigators about how to manage the stress associated with a heavy trial practice, achieve a work-life balance, and strategies for handling the demands of busy trial practice.

Immediate Roadside Prohibition Defence June, 2014
Fraser Valley Bar Association, Abbotsford, BC

Judge Alone Trials: The Canadian Way August, 2015
DUI Defence Lawyers Association, Chicago, IL

Impaired Driving Investigations for Police August, 2015
Sea-to-Sky RCMP, Squamish, BC

Blowing in the Wind: Finding Justice in IRP Cases March, 2016
Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC

Issues Arising Under Legalization: Impaired Driving – March, 2017
CLEBC, Vancouver, BC

Bill C-46: Changes to Impaired Driving Law June, 2017
Westclass, New Westminster, BC

DRE Classification and Overview December, 2017
Canadian Impaired Driving Lawyers Association, Richmond, BC

Due Process: Up in Smoke July, 2018
Liberty and Economics Lecture Series, New Westminster, BC

The New Impaired Driving Regime: An Introduction – September, 2018
Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC

Impaired Driving and Driving While Prohibited Bi-annually
UBC Indigenous Community Legal Clinic, Vancouver, BC

Changes to Canadian Impaired Driving Law –  September, 2018
BC Humanist Society, Vancouver, BC

Bill C-46: Changes to Impaired Driving Law – October, 2018
Calgary Criminal Defence, Association Calgary, AB

Violation Ticket and Immediate Roadside Prohibition Police Mistakes – February, 2019
Deas Island Traffic Services and Surrey RCMP, Surrey, BC

Cannabis Legalization and Impaired Driving – February, 2019
Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, BC

Drug Recognition Evaluation: Civil and Criminal Case Considerations – March, 2019
Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC

Cannabis Impaired Driving – March, 2019
Canadian Bar Association – Yukon Branch, Whitehorse, YK

Media Savvy Tips for Young Lawyers – April, 2019
Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Whistler, BC

Immediate Roadside Prohibitions – Common Errors – June, 2019
Coquitlam RCMP, Coquitlam, BC

Drager DrugTest 5000 Overview and Operation – July, 2019
DUI Defence Lawyers Association, San Diego, CA

The Great Debate – Should Cannabis be Legal in Care Homes – November, 2019
CLEBC and the Canadian Centre for Elder Law, Vancouver, BC

Trial Skills Seminar – December, 2019
ICLED, Indianapolis, IN

Drager DrugTest 5000: Overview and Operation, Trial Skills – March, 2020
Ohio Association of Criminal Defence Lawyers, Columbus, OH

Legal Marketing: Social Media, Video Production, Podcasting and More – April, 2020
DUI Defence Lawyers Association, Online

Hindsight is 2020: What I wish I knew about Social Media – May, 2020
Criminal Lawyers Association, Toronto, ON

Success Summit: Women-Owned and Women-Led Panel – June, 2020
Universal Women’s Network, Online

Emerging Issues in Criminal Law: Crown and Defence Perspectives – June, 2020
The Advocate’s Society, Online

Managing Trial Stress – September, 2020
Canadian Defence Lawyers, Online

Hiring NCA and Diverse Law Firm Candidates –November, 2020
LexPD and NCA Tutor, Ontario, Canada

Putting the Charter into Practice – December, 2020
Thomas Haney High School, Maple Ridge, BC

Criminal Law Crossover: Employment Law – March, 2021
Trail Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC

Trial Skills Cross-Examination and Improv for Lawyers – April, 2021
DUI Defence Lawyers Association, Charleston, SC

Podcasts

Feb 1st, 2020

EPISODE 33 - THE FEAR OF ROAD RAGE WITH KYLA LEE AND SAM TONNING

Voting ends November 13, 2020

Voting in the Bencher election takes place between Friday, October 30 until 5:00pm on Friday, November 13, 2020. Votes will be counted on Monday, November 16, 2020. See the Law Society of BC website for more information.