Fathers' rights group executive resigns: Disbarred lawyer's conviction prompts Calgary to quit body

[Though factual and balanced in its treatment of Mr. Adams' resignation in this article, The Journal later failed ever to look into the deceit and manipulation by the National Post reporter and her ally that our press releases detailed.     --Even though they had access to a copy of my book to inspect for themselves, and even though the important news of this unethical behavior by The Post was involving matters in The Journal's own back yard. Since there initially was no legitimate reason to write about me, The Journal was right in not following The Post in doing that; but there was every good journalistic reason, given the way The Post did it, for The Journal to expose their actions. ]    [Back]


Rick Pedersen, Journal Staff Writer. Edmonton Journal. Mar 31, 2001. pg. B5


A disbarred lawyer admits a fathers' rights group made a mistake when they picked him to be the Edmonton vice-president.


"Given the fallout, they probably did," [Tim] Adams said Friday, two days after the Calgary wing of Equitable Child Maintenance and Access Society (ECMAS) quit the organization in protest.


Adams was disbarred in 1998 after being convicted a year earlier for approaching a 16-year-old client for sex. He received a 15- month conditional sentence.


Everyone at the March 12 Edmonton general meeting of ECMAS knew of his past, he said. He said he made his background known during the three years he worked as an ECMAS volunteer.


Adams said he offered to resign the vice-presidency as soon as there were signs of controversy because he did not want to embarrass his family.


"My priority is to protect my children," he said.


The Edmonton group accepted his resignation last weekend. But the president of the Calgary organization, Mike Leberge, said his group still dropped the ECMAS name Wednesday, to form a new organization.


"There has been a judgment error, in our opinion," he said.


The matter is serious because both groups help children caught up in divorces and because Adams's conviction involved a 16-year-old girl.


Rick Fowler, a member of ECMAS's Edmonton executive, said most Edmonton members rejected calls for Adams to leave the group completely.


Although Adams's background raised questions when he first joined ECMAS, Fowler said his excellent work helping others has won respect over the years.


Parents, mostly fathers, are often emotionally devastated when alienated spouses deny access to children. Adams has helped more than 600 of these people in two years, Fowler said. "His work has been awe-inspiring."


Leberge, however, said Adams sometimes charges people for assistance dealing with family court issues. The Calgary group independently evaluates paralegals as a service to new members. No one providing paid services would be allowed to serve on the executive.


Adams said the paralegal work he does is just one of his several businesses and the court-related work brings in only $10,000 a year, he said.


"Most of the work I do with ECMAS is completely free."


Fowler said Adams charges less than half what a lawyer charges and only a quarter of his clients come from the support group.


This is not an issue, Fowler said, adding that he suggested the Calgary group acted too hastily.