TORONTO, ON — The Law Society of Upper Canada presented honorary Doctor of Laws degrees, honoris causa (LLD), to The Honourable George R. Strathy, Chief Justice of Ontario, and Dr. John Borrows, at Call to the Bar ceremonies held in Toronto on June 27 at Roy Thomson Hall.
The Law Society awards honorary doctorates to distinguished people in recognition of outstanding achievements in the legal profession, the rule of law or the cause of justice. Recipients serve as inspirational keynote speakers for the new lawyers attending the Call ceremonies.
Dr. John Borrows
An internationally recognized scholar in the field of Indigenous Legal Traditions and Aboriginal Rights, Dr. Borrows’ work has shaped the recommendations of both the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and the Royal Commission on Aboriginal peoples. His research and writing has also been cited by the Supreme Court of Canada.
As an educator and an advocate, he has focused on the racial and social barriers embedded in our legal and social framework. He received the honorary LLD at the morning Call ceremony, in recognition of his work as champion for First Nations and Indigenous rights and freedoms. See full biography.
The Honourable George R. Strathy, Chief Justice of Ontario
An extraordinary legal professional who practised civil litigation for 30 years and established Strathy & Associates in 1993, Chief Justice Strathy received the LLD in recognition of his esteemed career which exemplifies a dedication to the law, the profession and public service.
Appointed to the Superior Court of Justice (2007) and the Court of Appeal for Ontario (2013), he was most recently appointed Chief Justice of Ontario (2014) where he has championed the importance of access to justice and efficiency in the legal system. The Chief Justice received the honorary LLD at the afternoon Call ceremony.
See full biography.
Law Society Treasurer Paul Schabas awarded the honorary LLDs to the two recipients who then delivered separate keynote addresses to new lawyers attending the respective ceremonies. A total of 600 new lawyers were called to the Bar on June 27.
In his remarks to the newly called lawyers, Treasurer Schabas said, “As lawyers, you have the capacity to make a difference. Your education and training, and your position as a member of the profession, empowers you and, in turn, can empower others. Your job is to use the law, and to develop the law, for the good of your clients and the good of society.”
The Law Society regulates lawyers and paralegals in Ontario in the public interest. The Law Society has a mandate to protect the public interest, to maintain and advance the cause of justice and the rule of law, to facilitate access to justice for the people of Ontario and act in a timely, open and efficient manner.
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