Ayanna Ferdinand Catlyn
Ayanna Ferdinand Catlyn
News + Views + Events
Notable Work

Ayanna Ferdinand Catlyn has a corporate and commercial law practice. She serves as a counsel for local territorial, Canadian and international companies, banks and other lenders, law firms and not-for-profit organizations seeking assistance on corporate and commercial transactions. She primarily advises in respect to commercial real estate and financing transactions impacting their operations in the Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon.

As the supervising partner of the Northern Canada corporate records office, she also has a general solicitor’s practice dedicated to serving similar business needs of local clients based in the northern territories.

Examples of how Ayanna has helped her clients achieve their business goals:

  1. multiple local businesses Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut on share and asset transactions worth several millions dollars.
  2. local counsel for several banks and national and international lenders on financing transactions valued at over $100 million.
  3. local business and as local counsel for national companies on the acquisition and sale of commercial real estate and financing.
  4. local counsel for mining and metal companies on due diligence, financing and security.
  5. local clients for multi-million dollar reorganizations while working closely with the client’s accountants.

Ayanna also regularly advises the Northwest Territories Public Utilities Board on daily operational decisions, long-term organizational strategy, corporate and commercial issues, policies and procedures, and administrative law.

Because of her ability to communicate and respond clearly to her clients, Ayanna was recently ranked in Chambers Canada Guide 2024 for General Business Law - Northern Canada and the Arctic. She strives for perfection and any client, big or small, deserves her full attention. Ayanna’s analytical thinking gives her the ability to solve a problem before the client realizes there is one.

Value to Clients

Before joining the firm, Ayanna served as general counsel and corporate secretary for several organizations for more than a decade. She recognises the importance of understanding the client’s business needs before providing legal advice thus adding daily value to her clients’ operations and ensuring that their interests always come first.

Outside the Office

Ayanna and her husband enjoy travelling to destinations around the world and having new experiences, volunteering at the local SPCA and providing a foster home for neglected cats. Ayanna also enjoys biking to work, running, tennis, skiing and a variety of Northern sports.

NWT Bar Association Privacy Law Section
Canadian College of Health Leaders
2003 - Present
Canadian Bar Association
2003 - Present
General Business Law, Northern Canada and the Arctic
Chambers and Partners
2021 - 2024
Certified Specialist
Health Law
Board of the Northwest Territories Business Development and Investment Corporation
2021 - 2024
Board of the Stanton Territorial Hospital Foundation
2021 - Present
North West Territories SPCA
Volunteer Support
2016 - 2019
Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce
Chair, Bylaw Committee
2016 - 2016
Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce
2016 - 2016
Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce
Vice President
2014 - 2015
October 2023
Top 10 Influential Northern Canada and Arctic Business Law Lawyers 2023
Business Today
August 17, 2023
Yellowknife Evacuation Notice
Our thoughts are with everyone affected by the ongoing wildfires in the Northwest Territories.Due to the escalating situation, the authorities have issued an evacuation order for Yellowknife, and as a result, our physical office will be temporarily clo...
August 2022 - 3 min read
Do You Own a Business? You Need a Good Estate Plan
Up Here Business Magazine
Estate planning isn’t a fun topic, but it’s essential. That’s especially true for business owners, from sole proprietorships to corporations. Be sure your final plans meet your hopes and expectations for your business—for the sa...
May 2022 - 3 min read
Don’t Sit Still: Is Your Company Ready to Cope with the Current Pace of Change?
Up Here Business Magazine
Inflation. Climate change. A lingering pandemic. Risk abounds for business as we reach the mid-point of 2022. Here are 10 issues business leaders should be reviewing as they prepare for the hard-to-predict months ahead. Throughout the COVID-19 pande...
February 2022 - 3 min read
Recent Corporate Battle Carries a Legal Lesson for Business
Up Here Business Magazine
The recent family feud at Rogers Communications made for great drama. But don’t overlook the issue at the heart of the dispute. It’s a reminder that business law—not corporate practices—carry the day in court. The closing mon...
November 2021 - 3 min read
Back to Basics: How Mining and Indigenous Rights Work in the North
Up Here Business Magazine
Before any mining outfit can swing a geologist’s hammer, it needs to understand how Indigenous rights will shape their work. And the rules are different across the territories. That’s just the way it is, so it helps to get a little guidance...
July 2021 - 3 min read
Government Procurement: Nice Work… When You Can Get It
Up Here Business Magazine
If you have questions about government procurement, we’ve got some answers. Government spending in local communities is the backbone of economies across the north. Governments know that and they’ve developed policies to steer as much spendi...
March 2021 - 3 min read
Let’s Make a (Good) Deal: Want to Buy or Sell a Business? Remember This
Up Here Business Magazine
Congratulations! You’ve decided to acquire a brand new business or pass on the one you’ve built over the years. That’s great news but be prepared. You’re getting down to some serious brass tacks.  Here are some pointers to ...
January 2021 - 2 min read
Home Rule: How to Mix Corporate Governance + Social Distance
Up Here Business Magazine
The idea of gathering around a boardroom table in the era of COVID-19 seems off, given current public health advice. Still, corporate directors must continue to do their jobs—even if they must do them from their dining room tables. These five tip...
October 2020 - 2 min read
Simple as Pie? Not Exactly
Up Here Business Magazine
Employment contracts don’t have to be difficult, but do take care. Making a new hire can be a happy time for a business. That said, it’s important to take the long view and make sure your employment contract covers the issues that are impor...
September 2020
Field Law Lawyers and Department recognized in Chambers Canada 2021 Guide
Field Law is pleased to be included in the Chambers Canada 2021 guide with two firm rankings and five lawyers ranked. Our firm rankings are: Highly Regarded, Corporate/Commercial Department in Alberta, Band 2 Employment + Labour in Alberta, Ba...
April 2020 - 3 min read
Strings Attached
Up Here Business Magazine
Ottawa has unveiled pandemic financial support. That’s good news for struggling businesses. But remember: there’s no such thing as free money. Pay close attention to your obligations before accepting the help. As you’ve likely hear...
January 2020 - 3 min read
What's Your Business
Up Here Business Magazine
Entrepreneurs have options when it comes to choosing the legal structure for their business. All have advantages and disadvantages. When it comes to making your choice remember: One size does not fit all. A question I am frequently asked is, what bu...
April 2019
Amendments Made to the NWT Partnership and Business Name Act
Significant amendments have been made to the Partnership and Business Names Act (the Act), RSNWT 1988, c P-1.The amendments to the Act effect partnerships, limited partnerships, and extra-territorial partnerships. Previously, there were no renewal requ...
  • Amalgamated two major hospitals in Ontario
  • Local counsel for a $40 million refinancing on behalf of a major real estate investment company 
  • Acted as local counsel in a commercial real estate transaction for local Ford dealerships by Capital Automotive Real Estate Services Inc. group of companies


Dalhousie University, 2002, Masters Health Service Administration
Dalhousie University, 2002, Bachelor of Laws
Concordia University, 1998, Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Northwest Territories,2013