Harold (Sonny) Cochrane, Q.C.

Partner

Biography

Mr. Cochrane was called to the Manitoba Bar in 1996.  He is a Cree lawyer who grew up on the Fisher River Cree Nation and has deep connections to the Indigenous community.  He is the first Cree lawyer appointed Queen’s counsel in Manitoba.  In 2017, after 21 years of legal practice, he opened Cochrane Saxberg LLP, Manitoba’s largest Indigenous law firm. 

He practices in the areas of Indigenous law, business law, employment law, and child protection law.  Mr. Cochrane has been involved with professional associations including past board member of the United Way of Winnipeg, past member of the United Way of Winnipeg’s Aboriginal Relations Council and past board member of the Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce. 

He is a regular presenter at the Law Society and to various organizations on Indigenous law issues.  Mr. Cochrane is regularly retained by Metis and First Nation governments for business development initiatives, land claim settlements, child welfare issues and self government/jurisdictional matters.  His advice is also sought on matters related to the treaties and Canada’s constitutional framework in relation to Indigenous people.

Education

University of Manitoba, Bachelor of Arts

University of Manitoba, Bachelor of Laws

Leadership, Membership and Achievements

  • Law Society of Manitoba
  • Manitoba Bar Association
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Current Board Member of United Way
  • Past Member, United Way of Winnipeg’s Aboriginal Relations Council
  • Past Board Member, Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce
  • Served as legal counsel to Southern First Nations in the Aboriginal Justice Inquiry – Child Welfare Initiative which resulted in the restructuring of the child welfare system in Manitoba.
  • Legal Counsel at the Phoenix Sinclair Public Inquiry.
  • Legal Counsel to Manitoba First Nations in self-government negotiations with Canada and the Province of Manitoba toward achievement and restoration of jurisdiction over child welfare matters and education.
  • Member of legal team acting for a Manitoba First Nation in relation to the negotiation and development of the Keeyask Hydro Dam on traditional First Nation territory in northern Manitoba.
  • Co-legal counsel for a Manitoba First Nation in relation to the development and establishment of a Casino and Resort on First Nation Territory in Manitoba.
  • Legal Counsel to the First Peoples Economic Growth Fund – an economic development initiative to support Manitoba First Nation businesses.

Practise Areas

Indigenous Law
Business Law
Child Protection