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Monday, January 19, 2015

PAUL SCHABAS BECOMES LFO CHAIR

The Law Foundation of Ontario has a new chairman with Paul Schabas taking over the role from Mark Sandler.

Schabas took on the role on Jan. 1 after serving as a trustee since 2007. A media lawyer and partner at Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP, he has also served as chairman of Pro Bono Law Ontario and a director of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. He’s currently a bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada as well.

“I look forward to building on the significant achievements of my predecessor,” said Schabas of his new role.

16 NEW PARTNERS AT GOWLINGS

Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP has admitted 16 new partners at its offices across Canada and Britain.

Five of the new partners are in Ontario. Commercial litigation lawyer Brent Arnold, corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions lawyer Rob Blackstein, and restructuring and insolvency lawyer Frank Lamie have joined the Toronto office. Procurement lawyer Stephanie Pearce is now a partner at the Ottawa office while the Hamilton, Ont., office of Gowlings has welcomed business lawyer Pam Vermeersch to the partnership.

“We pride ourselves on having the top talent at Gowlings,” said Scott Jolliffe, Gowlings chairman and chief executive officer. “Our new partners are exemplars of the outstanding depth of experience and expertise we offer across Canada and internationally. They are also highly attuned to what our clients expect from their external counsel — trusted legal advisers who consistently deliver exceptional service, value, and results.”

RICHARD MAHONEY JOINS HANSELL LLP

Public policy lawyer Richard Mahoney has joined Hansell LLP.

Firm founder Carol Hansell said Mahoney, who was previously an adviser to former prime minister Paul Martin, is an important addition to the firm.

“Richard will add a valuable new dimension to the advice we provide. Government is an important stakeholder for many of our clients. Richard’s deep public policy experience will be an enormous asset,” she said.

Mahoney focuses on public policy, issue management, regulatory affairs, and governance matters.

He has made previous attempts at federal office under the Liberal party banner in the past and, according to the Ottawa Citizen, he’ll be seeking the Liberal nomination in Ottawa West-Nepean for the upcoming federal election.

NEW ADDITION AT JAMS

Former Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP partner Timothy Unwin has joined JAMS in Toronto.

Unwin will serve as an arbitrator and mediator at JAMS. “Tim has a reputation for efficiently grasping and managing complex matters,” said Chris Poole, president and chief executive officer of JAMS.

“His varied experience working with corporations and parties to reach resolution makes him an excellent addition to our panel in Toronto.”

For his part, Unwin said he has been a proponent of mediation and arbitration for many years. “I look forward to continue doing this important work and joining the supremely capable team in Toronto.”

POLL RESULTS

The results of the latest Law Times online poll are in.

According to the poll, more than half of respondents are optimistic about legal business prospects in 2015 with 54 per cent agreeing that the coming year couldn’t get worse for the industry than 2014. But the rest of participants weren’t so sure about that, saying the headwinds remain strong this year as well.

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It's unknown how widely police in Ontario utilize controversial surveillance techniques that can capture private data from non-targets in criminal investigations. Do you think there should be formal requirements to release this information?
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