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Good Governance Coalition grows as Bencher election approaches

Good Governance Coalition grows as Bencher election approaches

With the Bencher election approaching, the Good Governance Coalition continues to grow. Fourteen new candidates from across Ontario joined the 28 announced when the Coalition launched in October, including a full complement of five paralegal candidates.

The Coalition was created to prevent a repeat of vote-splitting in the last Bencher election that nearly allowed the slate from assuming control of the Law Society of Ontario. Coalition Benchers will not vote as a bloc, but are all committed to fiduciary principles of good governance—on which continued self-regulation depends.

“I want a Convocation filled with different voices, from geographically different areas, a myriad of practice areas, and representative of the Ontario community at large in our personal diversity”, said current Bencher Cheryl Siran, a lawyer from Kenora. “It’s a privilege to join this team of experienced leaders from across the province. I have every confidence they will return good governance to the LSO and focus on its core responsibilities.”

“The Law Society has significant responsibilities that depend on electing Benchers committed to good governance,” said Windsor paralegal Michelle Lomazzo, also an incumbent Bencher. “The Coalition reflects that diversity and the wealth of experience it represents. We can’t let vote-splitting allow the slate to take control of the LSO. Let’s elect Coalition candidates who take good governance seriously.”

Members of the Coalition come from all corners of Ontario, from Timmins to Windsor, and Cornwall to Kenora. The 41 lawyers and paralegals have practices of all kinds, from sole practitioners to large firms; in-house counsel to the Ministry of Attorney General; as well as academia and NGOs.

“If elected as a Bencher, I’ll make sure the perspectives and needs of sole practitioners are heard at Convocation,” said Cathi Mietkiewicz, a sole practitioner in Burlington who is running for the first time. “However we practice, the calibre of Coalition candidates is impressive. Being a Bencher is a big job and I’ve no doubt my fellow candidates are up to it.”

Other new Coalition candidates are:

· Paula Callaghan, a paralegal from Ottawa

· Demetra Dimokopoulos, a paralegal from Toronto

· Laura Emmett, a lawyer from London

· Karen Hulan, a lawyer from London

· Bonny Kaman Li, a paralegal from Toronto

· Shalini Konanur, a lawyer from Toronto

· William C. McDowell, a lawyer from Toronto

· Deborah Moriah, a paralegal from Toronto

· Stephen Rotstein, a lawyer from Toronto

· Peter Wardle, a lawyer from Toronto

· Matthew Wilson, a lawyer from London

All the Coalition candidates can be found at Remaining candidates will be announced in February.

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