Monday, October 13, 2009

The province has gone a long way in easing a justice of the peace shortage recently flagged by Chief Justice Annemarie Bonkalo, announcing 13 new appointments.

Meanwhile, the province also announced a pair of new judges for the provincial court, and the feds got in on the action and named a new Superior Court judge.

Bonkalo, chief justice of the Ontario Court of Justice, last month urged the province to quickly round out the court’s complement of justices of the peace. She said 21 spots were vacant, pointing to delays caused by a new, more stringent vetting process introduced two years ago.

The province seems to have responded to the top judge’s plea, naming four new JPs for western Ontario, five for the central west region, and four for the Toronto region.

In the west, former Arada Financial Services president Abdul Chahbar and former mental health professional Kristine Diaz will preside in London.

Former women’s shelter administrative assistant Adriana Magoulas and former manager of prosecutions and solicitor for the Regional Municipality of Waterloo Thomas Stinson will sit in Kitchener.

The central west region will be home to former sole practitioner Mangesh Duggal and past Toronto prosecutor Alston Gunness, both of whom will preside in Brampton. Brett Kelly, who was a senior consultant with the Ministry of Health’s primary health team, will sit in St. Catharines.

Glen Peace, formerly a consultant, will preside in Cayuga. Patrice Valeriano, who was named a deputy judge of the Superior Court in May, shifts to the JP role in Simcoe.

For the Toronto region, former Blessed Mother Teresa Catholic Secondary School principal Wendy Agnew; Marilyn Churley, previously a provincial cabinet minister; former Marsh Canada Ltd. senior vice president Gregory Fantino; and Carolyn Humeniuk, who worked as a prosecutor and court and tribunal agent with the City of Brampton, join the list of JPs.

The new Ontario Court of Justice judges include Patrick Boucher, a former lawyer at Bourgeault Brunelle Boucher who will preside in Cochrane, and Jean Legault, who previously practised with Addelman Edelson & Meagher. He will sit in L’Orignal.

The Department of Justice, meanwhile, announced that Superior Court Justice Caroline Brown will move from the general division in Hamilton to the family division. Former Manulife Financial senior vice president and deputy general counsel Richard Lococo steps into Brown’s old position as a judge of the Superior Court’s general division.

Miller Thomson LLP senior partner Robert Warren was remembered last week as a vital member of the firm’s Kitchener-Waterloo office after his sudden death at age 61.

“Bob will be fondly remembered for being a larger than life presence and a pleasure to be with,” read a notice posted on the firm’s web site.

“He was a devoted husband and father, consummate lawyer, and always gave enormously of his time and talent to his family, friends, clients, and the community.

Bob’s commitment to service and his contributions to Miller Thomson LLP and the Waterloo Region were the hallmarks of a distinguished career that we should all emulate.”
Warren leaves behind his wife, Barb, and children Jeff and Jennifer.

Top Ottawa commercial litigator Paul D’Angelo has moved his practice to Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP, bringing with him 13 years of experience in the field.

“Paul is a seasoned commercial litigator who adds further depth to our litigation group,” said David Migicovsky, head of the firm’s litigation group, in announcing the arrival.

“His broad range of experience will ensure we continue to meet the challenging needs of our corporate and public-sector clients.”

Canadian Bar Association past president Daphne Dumont recently received the Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case.

Dumont, who practises in Charlottetown, spoke out as CBA president in 2000-01 on the need for more legal aid funding, safeguarding the profession, lawyers’ integrity, and equality in the profession. In 1994, she contributed to the association’s national task force on gender equality.

She also received the CBA’s Touchstone Award in 2006 for her work in promoting equality in the Canadian legal profession.

“We are particularly proud that a leader of our association is recognized for her contribution to equality for women,” said CBA president Kevin Carroll.

“Daphne has an enviable reputation as a champion for change. Thanks to her leadership, there have been many improvements – not only [in] our profession but in our laws and our society.”

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