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Monday, October 17, 2011

BARRIE FIRMS MERGE

Barrie, Ont.-based law firms Burgar Rowe Professional Corp. and Purser Dooley Cockburn Smith LLP have officially merged to become Barriston LLP.

“The merger creates a firm that is unique in the region, which can serve clients who have always chosen local legal representation as well as those who might have otherwise felt it necessary to go to Toronto,” said Scott Fairley, a partner and member of the merger management team.

The partnership brings together 10 former partners from Burgar Rowe and the six former partners of Purser Dooley. Altogether, the new firm has 37 practising lawyers and one licensed paralegal.

“The creation of this new partnership was born of a common desire among the partners of both of the former firms to enhance our ability to serve our clients, attract new clients, and further develop and refine key practice areas,” said Jim McIntosh, another partner on the merger management team.

The firm now has two offices in Barrie and another in Bracebridge, Ont.

LFO SEEKING FELLOWSHIP APPLICATIONS

The Law Foundation of Ontario is accepting applications from prospective host organizations until Oct. 24 for its Public Interest Articling Fellowship Program for the 2013-14 articling period.

The fellowship aims to meet the need for legal assistance within the public interest community and allow law students to gain experience in public interest law. The program expands opportunities for articling at public interest organizations in Ontario by targeting groups that don’t have access to funds to pay for a position.

The fellowship covers the articling student’s salary, Law Society of Upper Canada licensing process fee, and licensing application fee. A stipend may also be available to pay for out-of-pocket expenses required to host an articling student.

Organizations can submit applications to Navneet Johal, Pro Bono Students Canada, 39 Queen’s Park Cres. E., Toronto, Ont., M5S 2C3.

LAWRENCE CANNON JOINS GOWLINGS

Former foreign affairs minister Lawrence Cannon has moved to Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP to chair its government affairs group in Ottawa.

In his new position, Cannon will advise the firm and its clients on strategic issues on a national and international level.

“Lawrence’s expertise in federal, provincial, and municipal levels of government offers unparalleled insight to our existing Canadian and international clients and to those seeking to establish themselves in Canada,” said Scott Jolliffe, Gowlings’ chairman and CEO.

“This announcement also reinforces our commitment to provide a worldwide perspective to our clients as their business objectives become increasingly global in nature and scope.”

Cannon was first elected to the House of Commons in 2006 and served in several cabinet positions in the Conservative government. He went down to defeat in the federal election in May.

CBA HONOURS U OF T STUDENT

University of Toronto law student Daniel Michaels has won the Canadian Bar Association’s 2011 James H. Bocking Memorial Award.

Michaels picked up the award for the best scholarly work related to Canadian competition law or policy for his paper on Visa and MasterCard merchant restraints.

The jury commended Michaels for his “balanced, well-written account” of issues in the credit card industry.

“Given that the credit card industry is attracting the attention of competition agencies around the world, the jury noted that the paper’s presentation of differing views within the field is both timely and helpful,” said Donald Houston, chairman of the CBA’s national competition law section and partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP in Toronto.

Michaels picked up the award at the CBA’s annual competition law conference in Gatineau, Que., on Oct. 6 and is set to start his articles in August 2012 at Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP.

2 FIRMS AMONG TOP EMPLOYERS

Bennett Jones LLP and Stikeman Elliott LLP are once again on the list of Canada’s top 100 employers.

It’s the ninth year in a row that Bennett Jones has received the honour, while Stikeman Elliott has made four consecutive years on the list. Mediacorp Canada Inc. compiles the list based on factors such as training, mentorship, diversity, and social responsibility.

“We are delighted and deeply honoured by this award,” said Hugh MacKinnon, chairman and CEO of Bennett Jones.

“We recognize that a law firm environment is highly demanding, and our priority is to provide employees with benefits and programs that contribute to their well-being. This award is a remarkable testament to our people, their dedication, teamwork, and mutual respect.”

METIS LAWYER HONOURED

Métis lawyer Jean Teillet has received the designation of indigenous peoples’ counsel from the Indigenous Bar Association.

The association awards the designation annually to an indigenous lawyer for outstanding achievements in the practice of law.

“I am pleased to see the indigenous bar recognize Jean for her passion and groundbreaking work on behalf of the Métis Nation and other Aboriginal Peoples in this country,” said Métis Nation of Ontario president Gary Lipinski.

“It is a designation that is well-deserved, and I am proud that the Métis Nation’s own lawyer was recognized amongst other exceptional legal minds.”

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