born into a family of lawyers almost seventy years ago, I decided at a very young age that “I really wanted nothing to do with law – it was so BORING.”
Fast forward to my late 50’s and somehow I “got appointed” as a member to a Human Rights panel of adjudicators. “Hey, this law stuff wasn’t quite as boring as I had concluded in my youthful naivety.”
Tempus fugit and an appointment to the Police Council culminated in “one thing leading to another” and at 68 my exposure to the legal world had morphed into chairing three quasi-judicial tribunals.
The inevitable happened; I’m sitting in a roomful of lawyers at a pre-hearing conference, and the dreaded words “Constitutional challenge” are whispered. “Who on earth ever heard of the Oakes’ test?” There really was no other alternative but for the guy who was supposed to be “leading this charge” to “figure it out”. With the very capable help of my new best “cyber-friend”, Amanda, I signed up for a distance study Law Certificate program at Queen’s University.
A wonderfully supportive associate (a lawyer and former Deputy Minister of Justice) with whom I had served on a board, immediately assumed a mentorship role and in the course of a couple of days persuaded me that, given my interest in Constitutional Law, I really needed to familiarize myself with the work of Supreme Advocacy LLP in Ottawa, and I must admit, “I have not looked back.” I am so grateful to Eugene and colleagues for the timely, relevant materials which they share with me (lawyers, and other students), and I have to say, using a legal expression I have recently learned, that they are both right and write “ON POINT!” If I ever pass the course, it will be a tribute to Eugene’s and his firm’s generous mentorship; thank you!”
Thank you: Michael Riseborough (retired, Yukon), firstname.lastname@example.org