WLAO President Ronda Bessner to receive Law Society Medal

Ronda Bessner, President of the Women’s Law Association of Ontario, is a recipient of a 2016 Law Society award. Ms. Bessner will be awarded a Law Society Medal, which are given to selected lawyers who have made a significant contribution to the profession.

“This year’s recipients are outstanding legal professionals and I look forward to honouring them at our upcoming ceremony,” said Law Society Treasurer Janet E. Minor.

“Our 2016 honourees have very impressive and diverse professional experience and expertise — from the private sector, public sector and academia. They are leaders in their fields — from environmental law to language rights and human rights. They are involved with our professions and in their communities and in the advancement of social justice issues. Each recipient represents the best of our professions and our professions’ core principles — commitment to the rule of law and access to justice.”

Ronda Bessner, Toronto — Called to the Bar in 1983, Ronda Bessner has led an extraordinary career as a lawyer and has made significant contributions to Ontario and its legal community through her leadership and involvement in the Women’s Law Association, as well as her leadership in serving the people of Ontario in five Ontario public inquiries. She is also a Visiting Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, and recently co-designed and co-chaired a pre-inquiry roundtable on Canada’s missing and murdered Indigenous women. She is also an adjudicator on the Consent and Capacity Board.

Ronda and 13 other award recipients will be recognized at the annual Law Society Awards ceremony on May 25, 2016, at Osgoode Hall.

Warmest congratulations Ronda!

For a list of award recipients, please see https://www.lsuc.on.ca/newsarchives.aspx?id=2147485737&cid=2147502321

Upcoming Spring programs

All programs listed below can be found on our Events pages for actual registration.

Save the Date! March 8th, 2016
International Women’s Day Celebration at the Law Society of Ontario
Place: The Law Society of Ontario, 130 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario (Enter at eastside doors facing Toronto City Hall)
Date: 03/08/16

Save the Date! April 19, 2016
10th Annual Diverse Careers for Women in Law
Place: The Law Society of Ontario, 130 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario (Enter at eastside doors facing Toronto City Hall)
Date: 04/19/16

Save the Date! Monday, May 9, 2016
Soup Sisters evening
Place: Liaison College of Culinary Arts, 205 Richmond St. West Toronto
Date: 05/09/16

14th Annual WLAO Golf Event a great success!

Ladies’ Golf Club of Toronto was beautifully manicured, watered and awaiting the ladies (and gents) participating in the the 14th Annual WLAO Golf event. Members and guests from WLAO and CAWEE enjoyed another day of fun activities, snacks and lots drinks as they played their rounds in the rather hot weather of a steamy August day.

After golf, participants joined more members and guests who came out for the dinner portion of our day. Everyone wandered about the garden learning about, or purchasing the lovely clothing, jewellery, hand-made products and services from our marketplace vendors. The dinner and dessert buffets which followed was bountiful and delicious – as usual! We thank all of our sponsors, prize donors and marketplace participants for their ongoing support of this popular event.

Keep August 22nd open for the 2016 golf event!

Event is sold out! Tuesday, June 9th Annual Awards Gala

Thank you to everyone attending – this event is Sold Out! The 2015 WLAO President’s Award will be presented to The Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic at the Annual Award Gala on Tuesday, June 9th in Toronto. The Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic is a specialized clinic for women experiencing violence. The Clinic seeks to change conditions that threaten women’s safety, dignity and equality. The Clinic advocates for law reform and social changes that benefit women.

2015 Annual Awards Gala
When: Tuesday, June 9, 2015
Time: 6:30pm reception; 7:00pm dinner (cash bar)
Location: Rosewater Room, 19 Toronto Street, Toronto

At the Award Gala, WLAO will recognise the winner of the new WLAO General Counsel Chapter Award, Norie Campbell, who is an active proponent for women achieving success in law and business through her work with mentoring, leadership and charitable programs.

We will also present all of our partnered 2015 awards including the new Lerners LLP/WLAO Elizabeth Grace Emerging Leaders Award, the new Avril Farlam Advocacy Award, the Aird & Berlis LLP/WLAO Equality Award, and the Torkin Manes LLP/WLAO Trailblazer Award.

We hope you can join us at our celebration honouring fantastic women and their remarkable accomplishments!
Students: ($90 (plus hst)
Members: $95 (plus hst)
Non-members: $110 (plus hst)
Table for 10: $1025 (plus hst)

This Event is Sold Out!

Upcoming May programs

9th Annual Diverse Careers Event
The Women’s Law Association of Ontario and the Law Society of Ontario are pleased to present a panel discussion and reception to promote diverse careers for women in the legal profession. Join us for our 9th Annual panel of successful and influential lawyers who have found their niche!

Thursday, May 7, 2015
The Law Society of Ontario Convocation Hall
Osgoode Hall, 130 Queen Street West, Toronto
5:30pm to 8:00pm (Discussion 5:30 to 7; Reception from 7)

The Women’s Law Association of Ontario and the Law Society of Ontario are pleased to present a panel discussion to promote diverse careers for women in the legal profession.
Panel members include:

  • Keya Dasgupta, Learning and Development Director, Norton Rose Fullbright
  • Avvy Go, OOnt. – Clinic Director, Metro Toronto Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic and Law Society Bencher
  • Freya Kristjanson, Counsel, Wardle, Daley, Bernstein, Beiber LLP
  • Michelle Moldofsky, General Counsel St. Michael’s Hospital (former)
  • Maud Murray, Deputy Minister, Government and Consumer Services

Attendance at the 5:30 p.m. panel discussion is eligible for up to 1 Substantive Hour of CPD. Light refreshments will be served at a reception following the panel.

For more information please Email: wlao@cogeco.ca | Phone: 416-410-7267.

Photographs and video taken at this event may be used in Law Society of Ontario and WLAO publications.


Women’s Law Association of Ontario
1 Toronto Street, Suite 900
Toronto, ON M5C 2V6



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