Candidate bio description
• Year of call- March, 1989.
• Education: B.A. (McGill) 1984; LL.B. (Osgoode) 1987; LL.M. (Osgoode) 1997.
• Fluent in English, French, Spanish, Italian, Calabrian.
• Employment: Fall, 1987- Spring, 1990- Department of Justice, Toronto. 1990-Present, private practice: Proceedings Against the Crown.
• Books (co-)authored: “Criminal Lawyer’s Guide to Immigration and Citizenship Law” (1996), “The Power of the Wheel: The Falun Gong Revolution” (2001).
• Member of Canadian Who’s Who (since 2011).
• Named as one of Top 25 Influential Lawyers, Canadian Lawyer Magazine, 2014, and 2015.
• President’s Award, OBA, 2015.
• Executive Director of Constitutional Rights Centre Inc. (2004-present).
• Elected Bencher: 2015-2019.
• Some major cases Litigated (initiated) include: Baker (SCC); Nadon Reference (SCC); Mainville Reference(SCC); Felipa (FCA); Wang (OCA)
What inspired you to run for bencher this year?
Recognizing that the Law Society regulates the profession in the “public interest”, what concerns me is:
1. The LSO is currently more about the concerns of government and big firm interests, and less about the public’s real interest and health of the profession. Too much Politically Correct talk, and not enough concrete action.
2. Lack of racial Diversity in the LSO executive governance. This notwithstanding Convocation’s initiatives and hollow mantra that the LSO will “lead by example”. Racial exclusion on the bench, particularly the Superior Court bench. Unacceptable number of racial minority students unable to obtain Articling positions is also part of this malaise. No effective action has been taken by the LSO to meaningfully address these problems.
3. Discipline of Lawyers. There is alarmingly disproportionate action taken against sole-practitioners, small-firm lawyers and a pass if not reluctance, to initiate proceedings against big-firm lawyers. Government Lawyers are never disciplined. This is unacceptable.
4. I am dead against ABS (Alternative Business Structures) beyond limited applications to Charities and Legal Aid Clinics.
5. We need reasonable radicals as Benchers to change the dismally festering, perfunctory state of the LSO. My reason for running for re-election is to continue to ensure a strong voice for the sole practitioner, small-firm lawyer, and insist that the LSO act, on behalf of lawyers, when acting in the “public interest”, which in turn protects the public.
What do you believe is the biggest issue facing the legal profession?
Racism and Law School Tuition Fees and the articling crisis they have created.
What would be your first priority upon election?
Racism and discrimination and the bleached composition of the LSO executive.
What do you hope to achieve over the next four years as a member of Convocation?
Consistently call out the dishonestly politically correct, never-ending mantra, and no action, as a pathetic pretence of governing in the "public interest".
What's the most pressing concern for the profession in your region of the province?
Restriction of Law School to the rich, and keeping out poor students from obtaining a law degree. And then, the gatekeeping barrier to the profession, against racilaized students obtaining equal articles. These two festering problems will bleach our profession back to the elite one of the 19th century.
Do you support the requirement to create and abide by a statement of principles?
In and by itself, without an obligation for CONCRETE action and reporting of that action, the statement of principle is yet another example of the hollow, disengenous, politically correct inaction that festers.