What I Bring to the Table:
I have had the privilege of being a Bencher since 2010. I have brought the same focus to access to justice, diversity and service to the profession that characterizes my work as a small firm practitioner.
As Co-Chair of the Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee and Vice-Chair of the Challenges Faced by Racialized Licensees WG, together with my colleagues, I have led initiatives to strengthen our commitment to Aboriginal justice and to supporting the racialized bar. I have pushed for proactive steps to hear from and respect our equity partners. I am proud that our dialogue with key organizations has significantly improved and that they have become key players in our initiatives. These initiatives cut across the private and public sector bars. I believe that, when it comes to creating supports for colleagues, there are many more similarities than differences amongst us. I also believe that, in all areas of the justice system including the judiciary, we must reflect those whom we serve.
Last election I committed to accountability and transparency. My push for webcasting convocation (which is now being piloted) is one example. The pending internal Equity Audit of the Law Society’s operations is another initiative that I strongly support and will monitor.
Much remains to be done. I previously campaigned for a robust mentoring program for small firm and sole practitioners. There are hopeful signs in this area with the striking of a Mentoring Task Force of which I am a member. We have yet to produce a product and I think this issue needs a strong voice. I will continue to be that voice as the need for mentoring affects our most vulnerable colleagues.
Talk is cheap but, with a commitment to teamwork with other Benchers, I believe we can produce results. My commitment to diversity and access to justice didn’t begin when I became a Bencher. These principles have animated my practice since I began my career 25 years ago and will continue to be my mainstay for the years to come. I would be honoured to be an Agent for Change for another four years.