Meet the Slate!
These 22 lawyers ran on a platform to eliminate the compelled Statement of Principles, known as StopSOP. They were elected with top votes from across the province and will serve the profession as benchers until 2023.
Their campaign was organized and led by the StopSOP Team, which included these non-bencher lawyers and paralegals and many others who helped in various capacities:
- Bencher Profiles
- Scott Marshall
The Society is in danger of forfeiting its moral authority to govern the profession with the Statement of Principles initiative. Reasonable people can disagree about policy and politics, but in a healthy, liberal democratic society freedom of conscience is non-negotiable. That freedom is under threat with SOP. Any bencher who failed to oppose the initiative at Convocation (and I’m sad to say that’s every one of them) isn’t fit to hold the office.
Now the powers that be may say the initiative is no great burden on members, having been defanged somewhat. Yes you must have a Statement of Principles, but we won’t ask to see them, wink wink. But that’s not good enough. It’s sophistry of the kind that gives lawyers a bad name. And do you trust the current benchers not to re-fang their initiative? Maybe what we have is tyranny in bunny slippers rather than jackboots, but it’s tyranny nonetheless. It won’t stand and you deserve better representation than either dangerous ideologues or greasy sophists. The office demands some spine and some integrity.
The Society has also become recklessly bloated in recent years. Its core mandate is licensing, (reasonable) regulation and discipline. Anything that deviates from that core mandate is a waste of your money. The financial and regulatory burden on the private bar has grown excessive and must be pruned back. I’m also a member of the California bar and 2019 dues for active members are approximately $600 for a membership four times the size of the LSO. It’s not unreasonable to ask what you get for the $2,500 you pay the LSO each year.
That said, in addition to working to roll back SOP, I’ll oppose any initiative that deviates from what should be the Society’s core mandate. By working with other members on the #StopSOP slate, we’ll put money back in your pocket and check the bureaucratic grandiosity in which the LSO is mired. Bureaucracies naturally metastasize and lose sight of those they’re meant to serve: members and the public. Let’s put it in its place. Thank you.
I was called to the Ontario Bar in 1996 after articling for a small Toronto firm. After my call I moved to Hong Kong where I worked as an editor for the Asian edition of the Wall Street Journal and later for Bloomberg News. I returned to the practice of law in 2002 after a move to California. I practiced as a litigator in Los Angeles and Santa Rosa before returning to Canada in 2006. Since 2006 I’ve been in sole practice in Kincardine, Bruce County, focusing on real estate, wills and estates and corporate law. I have three employees including one associate who practices family law. We have a good name in the community and try to go the extra mile for our clients