I have practiced family law since 1978, and am a mediator and collaborative lawyer. I was an appointed Dispute Resolution Officer for the Newmarket/York Region Court.
I always wanted to be a lawyer from the age of 3 and my education was focused towards law. I attended University of Toronto, University College in 1971 until 1973 on a Reuben Wells Leonard Trophy and Scholarship after graduating as valedictorian from my high school. I was accepted to Osgoode Hall Law School, (my first choice), after only two years of university. I was 20 years old in law school and one of the three youngest in my 1973 class. We were also the first year with 23% woman in the first year of law class and they really didn’t know what to do with us and I can remember one professor urging us to drop out by Christmas of our first year.
In 1976, I completed Law School after assisting in the preparation of a text on the New Canadian Business Corporations Act for one of my law school professors.
After I graduated from Law School, I commenced working with a small firm and have worked with either small or mid-size firms and mostly as a sole practitioner ever since. I have argued well known cases both at trial level and in the Ontario Court of Appeal.
During my career, I have worked as counsel for Council Fire (a First Nations organization); have worked for the Elizabeth Fry Society assisting women who have had problems with the law and I have had such diverse public service roles as presenting lecture series for B’nai B’rth, and Hadassah-Wizo. I have worked for Community Legal Education Organization (C.L.E.O) and presented lectures to various groups on family law and have given numerous lectures to the public. I have volunteered my time with both the Toronto and the Newmarket courts. I have helped parties understand the court process and alternatives to litigation on behalf of the Toronto Superior Court of Justice for almost 10 years. In the Newmarket court, I held the position of Dispute Resolution Officer (DRO) as a voluntary but appointed position to assist the court in resolution of family disputes.
I also worked on government legislation, both Provincial and Federal by way of changes to the Family Law Act and the Divorce Act to allow the family courts to assist women in obtaining religious divorces which affects both Muslim and Jewish women in situations where the women were often subject to blackmail or coercion. The issue also affects men in situations where women in the Jewish community would refuse to accept a Jewish Bill of Divorcement (ghett) given to them by their spouse. The legislation closed the door on religious coercion and allows for religious freedom and the right to remarry.
I have worked at various radio and T.V. stations, including Channel 11 in Hamilton for the Tom Cherrington show and for radio stations CKO and CKEY. I have also done a series of appearances for TVO’s “More to Life” and guest appearances on channel 10.
I am a member of the Toronto Lawyers’ Association; the York Lawyer’s Association; the Women Lawyer’s Association; Family Lawyer’s Association and the Toronto and York Region Collaborative Practice Groups and the International Association of Collaborative Professionals as well as the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.
Areas of Practice
- Family Law
- Child Custody
- Child Support
- Spousal Support
- Property Division
- Osgoode Hall Law School, Toronto, Ontario, Canada – 1976
- University of Toronto – 1973
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Toronto Lawyers’ Association, Member
- York Lawyer’s Association, Member
- Women Lawyer’s Association, Member
- Family Lawyer’s Association, Member
- Toronto and York Region Collaborative Practice Groups, Member
- International Association of Collaborative Professionals, Member
- Family and Conciliation Courts Association, Member