Toronto - March 12, 2018:?Members of Ontario's
legal professions will be recognized for their exceptional career achievements
and contributions to their communities at the annual Law Society Awards
ceremony on May 23, 2018, at Osgoode Hall.
“The Law Society is very proud and pleased to
celebrate the achievements of these 10 exceptional legal professionals,"
says Law Society Treasurer Paul B. Schabas. "Their commitment to serving
society and the legal professions is exemplary and we look forward to
presenting them with the Law Society’s highest awards of recognition.”
awards presented in May will include: The
Law Society Medal, The Lincoln Alexander Award, The
Laura Legge Award, The William J. Simpson Distinguished Paralegal
Award and the The J. Shirley Denison Award.
The following brief biographies highlight the
achievements of the 2018 recipients.
Law Society Medal?
Called to the Bar in 1987, Lenny
Abramowicz has committed his career to the Ontario community legal clinic
system, starting with his articles in 1986 at the Parkdale Legal Clinic, and most recently as the Executive Director
of the Association of Community Legal Clinics of Ontario. For the past
30 years, Mr. Abramowicz has worked tirelessly to promote access to justice and
equality for low-income Ontarians.
Kathleen Lickers: Called to the Bar in 1995, Kathleen Lickers,
a Seneca from Six Nations of the Grand River, is widely recognized for her work
in Indigenous affairs. She is renowned for her expert counsel and as an
accomplished negotiator between Indigenous agencies, First Nation governments
and federal and provincial ministries.
John Andrew Olthuis: Called to the Ontario Bar in 1987, the
Newfoundland and Labrador Bar in 2015 and the Alberta Bar in 1965, John Olthuis
has spent 40 years working with First Nations across Canada from Labrador to
the Northwest Territories for recognition and implementation of their
Aboriginal and Treaty Rights, including finding innovative ways to secure
cultural and habitat protection and economic benefits from projects they
consent to in their Traditional Territories.??
Gilles LeVasseur: Called to the Bar in 1994, Gilles LeVasseur,
a proud Franco-Ontarian, has dedicated much of his career to working to
protect, promote and enhance the constitutional and language rights of
Ontario’s Francophone community, including human rights.?
Carissima Mathen: Called to the
Bar in 1994, Carissima Mathen has championed women’s equality, respect for the
rule of law and public legal education throughout her career. From her work on
ground-breaking sexual violence cases, to her constitutional scholarship and
informative public commentary, she has become one of Canada’s leading legal
Traub: Called to the Bar in 1973, Walter
Traub is highly regarded as one of Canada’s foremost experts and authorities in
real estate and mortgage law. He is the
Editor in Chief of the leading book on mortgage law in Canada, “Falconbridge on
Mortgages” published by Canada Law Book in 2003 and he has made a
remarkable contribution to the law and practice of real estate through his role
as a teacher, mentor, writer and leader in the real estate bar.
Jim Cimba: Called to the bar
in 1981, James Cimba is known to the Hamilton community for his generous and
selfless community involvement. His past and ongoing commitments encompass a
wide range of organizations and causes, including arts and culture, sports and
recreation, community building, relief of poverty, social and healthcare
agencies, charitable projects and professional associations.
Mary Lou Fassel: Called to the Bar
in 1983, Mary Lou Fassel has demonstrated extraordinary achievement and
leadership throughout her work at the Barbara Schlifer Commemorative Clinic.
Over the past 30 years, she has dedicated herself to improving legal services to female
survivors of violence and to the reform of laws and legal system responses to
Shirley Denison Award?
Demakos: Called to the Bar in 1992,Antree
has devoted her entire career to demystifying the law and helping millions of
Canadians obtain better access to justice. Antree founded, and continues to be
the driving force behind Legal Line, a federal non-profit organization. For 25
years, she has helped millions of Canadians obtain free legal answers and
professional referrals through her pre-recorded, 24-hour information telephone
line, live telephone support and the website — Legalline.ca
William J. Simpson Distinguished
Harry D. Fine: Licensed in 2008, Mr. Fine served as an
adjudicator at the Ontario Rental Housing Tribunal. At the end of his term, he
opened a private practice providing legal services as a paralegal. He has
taught a variety of paralegal courses at various community colleges and has
served as a director of both the Paralegal Society of Ontario and the Ontario
Paralegal Association. He has also volunteered as president of the Landlord’s
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