Kellie L. Johnston

Of Counsel
Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP

Kellie L. Johnston

Kellie L. Johnston



Kellie Johnston is a senior member of our global risk advisory practice. Kellie assists global and Canadian clients to identify, assess and manage current and emerging risks across their global business. Her clients operate in many different sectors, including energy, infrastructure, mining and commodities, agribusiness, transport, retail, institutional investors, financial services, and life sciences.

Kellie has significant experience in advising on the development and implementation of regulatory compliance matters, internal conduct and controls, reporting and disclosure obligations, duties of directors and officers, due diligence processes, integrated risk management at both the corporate and project-specific levels, and corresponding corporate policies and procedures.  

She also advises on legal and non-legal risk, mitigation plans and implementation, supply chain risks, developing and strengthening relationships with internal and external stakeholders, understanding and meeting due diligence obligations, and managing complex regulatory, compliance and sustainability issues. 

Kellie has a particular focus on risks and opportunities relating to sustainability, business and human rights law, environment, social and governance (ESG), and climate change.  

Prior to joining us, Kellie served in various consulting and in-house roles with large energy and infrastructure companies, and other industries advising on complex risk identification, assessment and mitigation. She has a deep understanding of the complex and often intersectional issues that her clients are dealing with.  

Kellie holds a LL.M in international law, focused on business and human rights, and she is a Certified Compliance & Ethics Professional (CCEP).

Professional experience

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LL.M. (Distinction), Business and Human Rights, University of New South Wales, 2007
LL.B. Dalhousie University, 2000
  • Alberta 2001
  • Advising clients on regulatory strategies, structures, processes that enable a proactive assessment of regulatory trends and impact on business; advice in designing, assessing, and building regulatory compliance programs
  • Identifying and mitigating against key risks for clients
  • Developing and imbedding a climate risk framework for an international oil and gas company - from developing risk appetite and KPIs to corresponding policies and procedures and training, conduct and culture
  • Developing and embedding a sustainability strategy, including policies and procedures as well as training and culture for a mid-stream company
  • Identifying and managing ESG risks, including sustainability reporting and environmental issues; business and human rights
  • Due-diligence to meet regulatory requirements and legal tests for due-diligence defences and negotiating agreements with government and regulators
  • Government relations and policy development; helping clients to improve the ways they leverage people, third-party relationships, business processes, and controls to manage operational risks and streamline business performance
  • Experience on business side doing risk assessments and mitigation plans for identified risks as well as making business decisions that align with corporate risk appetite
  • Experience developing corporate-wide environmental, sustainability, and climate policies and procedures as well as implementation; experience working on and championing corporate culture, conduct and accountability in large corporations
  • Advising food and drug clients on regulatory strategies and structures, proactive assessment of regulatory trends and impact on business; advice in designing, assessing, and building regulatory compliance programs and compliance requirements.
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Law Society of Alberta
  • Board secretary and chair of the Governance and Board Development Committee, The Alex Community Health Centre Society
  • Certified Compliance & Ethics Professional (CCEP) - Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics (SCCE)
  • Certificate in Corporate Citizen Management, Boston College - Wallance E. Carroll Graduate School of Management