Born and raised in Newfoundland, Barry W. Bussey now lives in Ontario with his beautiful wife, LaVonna.
Barry has studied extensively in the fields of law, religion, and political science, receiving his BA in theology (Burman University), LLB (University of Western Ontario), MA in Political Science (Memorial University), LLM in Constitutional Law (York University), MPACS (University of Waterloo) and PhD (University of Leiden, Netherlands). He is Head of Legal Affairs at the Canadian Centre for Christian Charities and Associate Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Notre Dame Australia (Sidney).
Throughout his career in the charitable sector, Barry has been a passionate advocate for religious freedom. An ordained pastor, he represented the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Newfoundland and Ontario, dealing with issues such as funding for religious education, workplace accommodation, employment law, property, estates, and civil litigation, before serving as General Counsel for the Adventist Church in Canada.
In 2000, while preparing for the world meeting of the Seventh-day Adventist Church General Conference in Toronto, Barry organized a successful campaign to persuade Canada Post to issue a postage stamp commemorating the event. It was the first time that a Western country so honored the Adventist Church. In 2004, Barry represented the Church before a Parliamentary Committee on the issue of same-sex marriage, and argued for maintaining religious freedom in the Reference re Same-Sex Marriage case at the Supreme Court of Canada. He was also involved in organizing a conference which later resulted in the edited volume, Should I Fight? Essays on Conscientious Objection and the Seventh-day Adventist Church (2011).
In 2009, Barry was the Associate Director of the Public Affairs and Religious Liberty Department at the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. As head of the Adventist Office of Legislative Affairs on Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C., Barry was actively involved with the Workplace Religious Freedom Coalition and advocated for the cause of religious freedom in Washington. He also represented the International Religious Liberty Association at the United Nations in New York and Geneva.
In July 2011, Barry began working with the Canadian Centre for Christian Charities as the Vice-President for Legal Affairs. Now the Head of Legal Affairs, Barry has been active in researching and representing CCCC’s interests on a variety of political issues, such as tax incentives for charitable donations, the advancement of religion as a charitable “head” or category, and the Canada Summer Jobs program. He has also served as legal counsel for CCCC in a number of cases before the Supreme Court, including Loyola High School v Quebec (Attorney General), Highwood Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses (Judicial Committee) v. Wall, Trinity Western University v Law Society of Upper Canada, and Law Society of British Columbia v Trinity Western University.
Barry has edited or co-edited four volumes on law and religion – including The Status of Religion and the Public Benefit in Charity Law (Anthem, 2020) – and has published a growing number of law review articles.
You may follow his academic writing at https://leidenuniv.academia.edu/BarryWBussey or https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/cf_dev/AbsByAuth.cfm?per_id=1667202.