Virginia Bartley

Posted by on Jul 15, 2015 in Tributes |


A Community Project to honour women who have enriched our lives

The Ban Righ Centre supports mature women who are starting or returning to education at Queen’s University. In taking this significant step, these women found role models, advocates and inspiration in other women. Then, as they engage in their studies and in their activities beyond Queen’s with friends, family, peers and colleagues, these students effect continual and positive change, extending the reach of their mentors and the Ban Righ Centre. Through “Who Is She?” we honour women who make a difference.

Virginia Bartley

Honoured by: Pamela Cross

In June 1989, Virginia Bartley, then the Registrar at the Queen’s Faculty of Law, announced that the law school was starting a part-time studies program. I was 34, a single mother of two and had been out of school for more than a decade. My teenage dreams of becoming a lawyer had been put on a back burner when I became pregnant at 18, but I had continued to think of this as something I might do “some day.”

“Some day” became that day, when I picked up the phone and called Virginia. Her immediate enthusiasm about my plan and her certainty that I would be successful gave me the push I needed to take the LSAT exam and complete my application to Queen’s law.

Law school is not always a welcoming place for feminists, and Virginia’s vision, warmth and guidance were of enormous importance through my years as a law student.
I have never regretted my decision to become a lawyer, and want to publicly honour Virginia for the important role she played in helping me achieve this goal.