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Dominica’s newest attorney at the Bar vows to be an advocate for young men in society

Kevin Julien

A new lawyer, Kevin Julien, with a passion for justice and advocacy has emerged from the heart of the community of Goodwill, where a strong structure and a nurturing environment fostered his growth. Julien’s background, rooted in a family where public service is a virtue, set the stage for a journey that would lead him to the legal profession. On September 28, 2023, Julien became the newest member of the legal fraternity in Dominica. The application to admit him to practice as a barrister and solicitor of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in the Commonwealth of Dominica was made before Dominica’s new resident High Court Judge, His Lordship, Justice Colin Williams.

Julien’s petition to be admitted to the practice was put forward by attorney-at-law Singoalla Blomqvist-Williams and seconded by Jilane-Milani Prevost. Succeeding his admission to the Bar, Julien shared insights into his journey
towards achieving his dream career during an interview with Dominica News Online (DNO).

Born and raised in Goodwill, he stated, he grew up in a home where values of discipline, responsibility, and public service were instilled. His father, a retired Chief Prison Officer, John Julien, and his mother, Magdalene Julien, a retired Senior Administrative Officer in the Ministry of Tourism and Legal Affairs, provided a solid foundation for his upbringing. Julien’s academic journey showcased his intellectual prowess and passion for social issues. His involvement in various youth groups and his representation of St. Mary’s Academy in debate competitions highlighted his early penchant for public speaking and advocacy.

Winning awards for public speaking and being recognized as the most outstanding student in sociology at the Dominica State College further fuelled his desire to make a positive impact. Upon entering the University of the West Indies, Julien continued to excel. Winning the ECGC Foundation award for academic excellence and clinching victories in the Clarke Gittens and Farmer Mooting Competition and the Law faculty debating competition at the Cave Hill campus demonstrated his commitment to academic and intellectual pursuits.

“The journey to becoming an attorney was nothing short of spectacular,” he expressed. “Many trials and tribulations, but I faced them with an open mind and an optimistic mindset and overcame and conquered such challenges; the
key to this was putting God first in everything.”

The motivation to pursue a career in law stemmed from Julien’s love for public speaking and his innate drive to advocate on behalf of others. His experiences at secondary school, where he frequently spoke on behalf of
his peers, laid the groundwork for his future in the legal profession. According to him, the untimely death of his cousin, Chester Francis, also served as a poignant reminder of the transient nature of life and fuelled his determination to seize every opportunity.

Despite a successful career at the Bank of Nova Scotia, where he received numerous awards and gained the respect of colleagues, Julien decided to leave in pursuit of his dream of becoming an attorney.

“It was a difficult decision,” he stated “but it is one I would make all over again.”

Julien’s legal acumen is diverse, with strengths in both criminal and civil law. Recognized for his advocacy skills by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Sherma Dalrymple, who spoke at his sitting of his admission to the Bar, the new attorney says he is equally adept at critical thinking and attention to detail, making him an asset in civil matters.

However, Julien’s vision extends beyond personal success as he aspires to be an active member of the Dominica Bar Association. He says that his commitment to justice and access to justice will be evident in his tenure as an attorney and pledges to utilize his skills to assist the association in any way possible. Additionally, in the pursuit of justice, Julien is driven by a deep-seated desire to uplift and inspire the youth, especially young men facing the challenges of crime, violence, and hopelessness. With a focus on the male-dominated environment at the Dominica State Prison and the prevalence of gun violence, he feels compelled to advocate for the betterment of young men in society.

“I intend to use my platform to encourage and motivate young people, in particular, the young men who feel that all hope is lost, those who have fallen astray. We as attorneys possess a moral and ethical duty to assist them in
returning to the path of righteousness,” he posited. Julien continued, “When we look at the Dominica State Prison, it is male-dominated. When we look at gun violence that is currently plaguing our beloved country, it is being caused by young men. Further, we see that the victims of these gun violence are young men. I feel duty bound as an attorney
at law to advocate for the uplifting of our young men so they can contribute more meaningfully to society.”

He further averred, that in our society, we are witnessing the tragic loss of too many male lives, which are entangled in illegal activities.

“Many are not receiving the necessary psychological attention and spiritual guidance that can assist them in improving their thought processes and conduct,” he declared.

Julien said the timeless wisdom of Bob Marley echoes loudly ’emancipate ourselves from mental slavery,” a powerful message especially pertinent today, as he urges each attorney and the wider community to play a role in
freeing our young men from the grips of gun violence, crime, and a sense of hopelessness that seems to have infiltrated their cognitive functioning.

As Julien embarks on his journey in the legal profession, he vows to bring with him not just legal expertise but a commitment to social justice, mentorship, and the uplifting of the community. Resonating through the sentiments of
many of his colleagues is the acknowledgement that the Bar has gained a new member, one who will not only shine in the courtroom but also serves as a beacon of hope for those in need.