CLF Staff & Support Team

Derek B.M. Ross
(Executive Director &
General counsel)

Derek B.M. Ross, LL.B. (Western), LL.M. (Toronto), is the Executive Director & General Counsel for Christian Legal Fellowship, where he oversees all aspects of the organization's operations, education and training programs, publications, and advocacy. His litigation practice focuses on human rights and religious freedom, and he has acted for public interest interveners in numerous cases involving the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, including several before the Supreme Court of Canada. He has also appeared before numerous legislative and Parliamentary committees to present on constitutional and legal issues.

Derek previously served as Director of Legal Affairs for the Canadian Council of Christian Charities, Canada's largest association of religious organizations, where he served on the Canada Revenue Agency's Technical Issues Working Group and as the general editor of the Charities Handbook, 19th Edition (2014), a comprehensive legal guide for Canadian charities. Prior to that, Derek practiced civil litigation with a focus on public, education, and municipal law.

Derek has served as an Executive Member of the Charity and Not-for-Profit Law sections and the Constitutional, Civil Liberties, and Human Rights Law sections of both the Canadian Bar Association and the Ontario Bar Association. He regularly presents at legal conferences and law faculties on constitutional and charity law. He is editor-in-chief of the Christian Legal Journal, a quarterly periodical examining the relationship between law and religion. His writings have appeared in numerous publications, including Lawyer's Weekly, Canadian Lawyer, Policy Options, and Public Discourse. He is the general editor of Assisted Death: Legal Social, and Ethical Issues After Carter (LexisNexis Canada, 2018), and a forthcoming special edition of the Supreme Court Law Review (2019).

Derek spent his formative years growing up in Port Hedland, Australia and considers himself a Quasi-Aussie (he can still speak fluent Australian, if you ask him). As much as he loves his second Aussie home, he couldn’t be prouder to be a Canadian (and a Canadiens fan).

You can find Derek on Twitter @derekbmross.

Representative Work

Supreme Court of Canada

  • Law Society of British Columbia v. Trinity Western University 2018 SCC 32

  • Trinity Western University v Law Society of Upper Canada 2018 SCC 33

  • Highwood Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses (Judicial Committee) v. Wall 2018 SCC 26

  • Ktunaxa Nation v. British Columbia (Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations) 2017 SCC 54

  • Loyola High School v. Quebec (Attorney General), 2015 SCC 12

Selected Appellate and Superior Court work

  • Christian Medical and Dental Society of Canada v College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, 2018 ONSC 579

  • E.T. v. Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board, 2017 ONCA 893

  • Trinity Western University v. The Law Society of Upper Canada, 2016 ONCA 518

  • Trinity Western University v. The Law Society of British Columbia, 2016 BCCA 423

  • The Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society v Trinity Western University, 2016 NSCA 59

  • Trinity Western University v The Law Society of Upper Canada, 2015 ONSC 4250


Sarah Mix-Ross
(Associate Counsel)

Sarah Mix-Ross, B.A., M.S.W., J.D., serves as associate counsel at Christian Legal Fellowship. 

Sarah was called to the Ontario Bar in 2016 after articling with an insurance defence boutique in Toronto with a focus on professional malpractice claims.   

In 2015, Sarah earned a Juris Doctor cum laude from the University of Ottawa (Dispute Resolute and Professionalism specialization) where she was the recipient of an oral advocacy award. Sarah also earned a Master of Social Work from the University of Windsor in 2012 and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours, with distinction) from Western University in 2010.

Sarah remains an active alumni member of the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law in both the Legal Writing Academy and JurisMentor programs. Having earned her undergraduate degree in music, Sarah enjoys teaching piano and voice to young learners in her spare time. 

Timothy Stonhouse
(Regional Director - Western Canada)

Timothy Stonhouse has practiced criminal and family law for over 22 years.  He articled with a well-known criminal firm in Edmonton and then opened his own office.  Tim is trained as a mediator and collaborative family lawyer.  He was a presiding Justice of the Peace in Edmonton for 10 years. Beginning his working career as a teacher in a private, Christian school, Tim served as a board member and finally as president of the Association of Christian Schools and Colleges of Alberta where he contributed to the drafting of the School Act in the 1980’s.  

Tim has always had an interest in politics and government.  He has served on social action groups in various churches, has travelled to Ottawa to petition M.P.’s in the area of the rights of private schools and served on various municipal committees and election campaigns. Tim has been a member of Christian Legal Fellowship since the early 1990’s, serving on the board for several years.  As CLF's Regional Director for Western Canada, Tim meets with Christian lawyers, judges and law students, encouraging them to integrate their faith with their practice and study of the law.  He also assists local churches with legal issues whenever possible. 

Calvin Beresh
(Director of Student Ministries)

Calvin Beresh graduated with a B.A. from Oral Roberts University, Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1975 before obtaining his LL.B from Western University in 1978. During his final year at law school, he hosted the student law conference at Western during which the Christian Legal Fellowship was founded and was a member of the steering committee for incorporation of CLF. 

With a strong entrepreneurial spirit and an even stronger desire to take Christ into everyone's world, he began his own law practice in 1980. He joined with another CLF member, Ashley R. Gnys, and, together, they took over a practice established in 1894 to form the firm of Sharpe, Beresh & Gnys in Niagara Falls, Ontario. The firm now has three lawyers and fifteen support staff. Mr. Beresh's practice emphasis is on Wills, Estates and Wealth Management. 

Mr. Beresh has a passion to share his vision of the practice of law as a ministry particularly to students. He enjoys meeting with law students across the country.

Shawn Knights (Student Ministries Support)

board of directors

Shawn Smith (President)

Roger Song (Vice President)

John Lockhart (treasurer)

Philip Fourie (Secretary)

Shayna Beeksma

Melanie bueckert

Marie-Louise Fast

Jonathan kulathungam

Harry thompson, Q.C.

Kristopher Kinsinger (Student Representative)