Skip to content

FACL 11th Annual
Conference and Gala

Join Us!

The Holistic Barrister & Solicitor: The Rule of Law, Professional Excellence, and Wellbeing.

Hear about:

  • The role lawyers play in the rule of law;
  • Legal developments;
  • Changes in the legal landscape (technology and career-wise);
  • How we can be happier lawyers; and
  • What we can do to make our profession more supportive and inclusive for everyone!


Saturday, November 18, 2017

8:00am – 9:00pm

Conference & Gala


Toronto Region Board of Trade

First Canadian Place

77 Adelaide St W

Toronto, ON M5X 1C1


We hope you had a fun conference! For those of you who missed it, a copy of the Conference Brochure is attached below. Be sure to keep an eye on our website and on our social media outlets for 2018!

Brochure2017_Part A

Brochure2017_Part B

Event Schedule

8:00am to 9:00am


9:00am to 9:10am

Welcome Remarks

9:10am to 9:20am

President's Remarks

9:20am to 9:50am

Keynote Address on Khadr v Canada

Keynote Address by Professor Audrey Macklin, University of Toronto, Faculty of Law

9:50am to 10:35am

Viewpoints on Khadr

This program contains 45 minutes of Substantive Content

  • Professor Carmen Cheung, Munk Centre for Global Affairs
  • Rory Fowler, Cunningham Swan
  • Nader Hasan, Stockwoods LLP
  • Moderated by: Professor Vincent Chiao, University of Toronto, Faculty of Law

Omar Khadr was accused of being an Al Qaeda terrorist. He was also detained as a youth at Guantanamo Bay without proper access to counsel, held under a regime that violated international law, and tortured. The Supreme Court of Canada heard his case twice. And finally, nearly 15 years after he was first detained, the Government of Canada paid him $10 million. How should we think about this case? What implications does this precedent have for how we compensate victims of Charter violations in the future? For how we compensate victims of terror? For our national security? Professor Audrey Macklin has been involved with the Khadr case from its inception. She will share her insights with us followed by a panel discussion featuring three public law experts who are intimately familiar with the Khadr case.

10:35am to 10:50am

Morning Break

10:50am to 11:10am

Coaching and Your Law Practice

  • Stephen Ahad, Counsel, Law Society of Upper Canada

Ever wondered how coaching works with respect to the legal profession? Learn about the Law Society of Upper Canada’s new Coach and Advisor Network program, and how it can help both coaches and participants enjoy more successful and fulfilling work.

11:10am to 12:15pm

Advancing Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

This program contains 25 minutes of Professionalism Content

  • Suhuyini Abudulai, Partner, Cassels Brock
  • Tina Lie, Partner, Paliare Roland
  • Andrew Pinto, Partner, Pinto Wray James LLP
  • Julia Shin-Doi, General Counsel and Secretary of the Board of Governors, Ryerson University
  • Moderated by: Raj Anand, Partner, WeirFoulds LLP

On December 2, 2016, the Law Society of Upper Canada voted to adopt the recommendations of the “Challenges Faced by Racialized Licensees” Working Group. The recommendations included requiring legal workplaces develop a human rights/diversity policy, asking inclusion questions of licensees and publishing an inclusion index for all legal workplaces of at least 25 licensees, and including topics of cultural competency and equity in the licensing process. Almost one year has passed. How are legal workplaces—big, medium, and small—faring under this new regime? How is the implementation of these recommendations going on the ground level? Our panelists will discuss these issues within the broader context of equity and inclusion in the legal profession.

12:15pm to 1:15pm

Lunch Break

1:15pm to 2:30pm

Breakout Panels

Session A: Embracing the Future of Legal Tech

This program contains 60 minutes of Professionalism Content

  • Mona Datt, Co-Founder and President, Loom Analytics
  • Monica Goyal, Founder, My Legal Briefcase and Aluvion
  • Daniel Kim, Business Development, Kira Systems
  • John Wu, CEO, Legally Inc.
  • Moderated by: Ian Hu, Counsel, Claims Prevention and practicePRO, LAWPRO

Artificial intelligence is taking over the world, for better (so says Mark Zuckerberg) or worse (so says Elon Musk). Last month’s Toronto Life tells us that Toronto may be the new Silicon Valley. Technology is permeating every aspect of our lives, including the legal profession. What changes can we expect to see in the next 10 years? What areas of legal practice will be taken over by machines? How can we harness technology to our advantage rather than allowing it to replace us? Three panelists on the cutting edge of technology and the law will speak to us about these and other related topics in what will be a fascinating discussion of the future of the legal profession in a rapidly evolving world.

This panel will cover:

  • Future of law and technology, trends and changes (10 minutes)
  • Chatbots, lawyers and clients (10 minutes)
  • Legal research, legal analysis & AI (10 minutes)
  • Contract review & AI (10 minutes)
  • The effect of AI on the legal market – boon or danger? (10 minutes)
  • Tech competency – should there be a rule and what would it look like? (10 minutes)
  • Relying on technology – dangers and risks (10 minutes)
  • Questions (5 minutes)

Session B: Cultivate Your Cannabis Legal Knowledge

This program contains 45 minutes of Professionalism Content and 30 minutes of Substantive Content

  • Hafeez Amarshi, Crown Counsel, Public Prosecution Service of Canada
  • Victor Liu, Partner, Goodmans LLP
  • Alice Tseng, Partner, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
  • Moderated by: Gerald Chan, Partner, Stockwoods LLP

Cannabis is coming to stores run by the Liquor Control Board of Ontario near you. The federal and Ontario provincial governments have both announced their legislative plans to roll out the legalization of marihuana beginning July 2018. What regulations will those in the cannabis industry face? What will the private sector look like with the provincial government monopolizing distribution? What room, if any, will there be left for the criminal law? A regulatory lawyer, corporate lawyer, and federal drug prosecutor will share their unique perspectives with us in this rapidly developing area.

Topics of discussion will include:

  • Forthcoming regulations on the distribution of cannabis—medical and recreational—in the Province of Ontario (15 min);
  • Challenges faced by corporations in the cannabis industry given the forthcoming regulations (5 min);
  • How to service corporate clients in the cannabis industry (15 min);
  • What room will be left for the criminal law in the punishment cannabis-related conduct (10 min);
  • What factors a Crown takes into account in ethically exercising his/her prosecutorial discretion in cannabis-related cases (15 min);
  • How to build a cannabis-related practice (15 min).

Session C: The Inside Scoop on In-House Practice

This program contains 60 minutes of Professionalism Content

  • Jolie Lin, Deputy General Counsel, BMO Financial Group
  • Lianna Yeung, Legal Counsel and Deputy Privacy Officer, Capital One
  • Jamie Yoon, Senior Legal Counsel, Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation
  • Hilda Wong, Vice President and General Counsel, First National
  • Moderated by: Linda Wu, Principal, Wu Legal

Have dreams of moving in-house, but aren’t sure how to prepare for an interview, assess whether an organization is right for you, or whether there really are career advancement and development opportunities? Or, if you’re external counsel, are you wondering how to stand out from a service perspective? Get the real scoop on these questions from in-house lawyers practising in various industries and areas. This panel will include:

  • Introduction – Panelists’ paths to in-house: each panelists shares their personalized career journey and how and why they made certain decisions/moves in their career. In light of the Globe and Mail Hadiya Roderique story “Black on Bay Street”, did being a minority on Bay Street affect your decision to move in-house? Has it been different in-house? (25 mins)
  • Things to consider when making the move in-house/how to assess if the organization is right for you. Did an organization’s diversity/inclusivity policy affect your decision on making the move? What does a diversity/inclusion policy mean to you? (25 mins)
  • Rewards/challenges of in-house counsel position. Career advancements/development considerations for in-house counsel. Have you experienced any barriers in-house, and if so, do you have any ideas/tips on how to address it? (15 mins)
  • Responsibility of in-house counsel to promote diversity and inclusivity, through hiring practices and use of external counsel. (10 mins)
2:30pm to 2:45pm

Afternoon Break

2:45pm to 4:00pm

Breakout Panels

Session D: Demystifying the Corporate Law World

This program contains 45 minutes of Professionalism Content

  • Bobby Wang, Counsel, McCarthy Tetrault LLP
  • Richard Wong, Partner, Osler
  • Rachael Lee, Associate, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg, LLP
  • Moderated by: Evelyn Li, Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright

What does a corporate lawyer do? What does a day in the life of an advisor to a large commercial organization look like? How does one help his/her clients achieve their business objectives while navigating a complex maze of legal requirements? Here to help us to demystify the corporate world (as it intersects with the legal profession) are three seasoned corporate lawyers and one recent call from some of Canada’s largest business law practices. Topics include:

  • Exploring careers in corporate law (10 min)
  • Learning business fundamentals (10 min)
  • Managing client expectations and working with c-suite clients (10 min)
  • Diversity in the law – challenges of being a visible minority (15 min)
  • Diversity in the law – cross-culture context in cross-border transactions (10 min)
  • Role of mentorship and networking (10 min)
  • Take-away advice, questions and answers (10 min)

Session E: Excelling in a Public Law Career

This program contains 60 minutes of Professionalism Content and 15 minutes of Substantive Content

  • Joseph Cheng, Counsel, Department of Justice Canada
  • Sally Kwon, Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada
  • Leonard Kim, Assistant Crown Attorney, Ministry of the Attorney General
  • Kelly Matsumoto, Practice Lead, Planning & Administrative Tribunal Law, City of Toronto
  • Moderated by: Michael Doi, Legal Director, Financial Services Commission of Ontario

Gain insight into developing an interesting and fulfilling career in government and the broader public sector from a panel of experienced public sector lawyers. Hear about the nature of a public law practice, some of the challenges and opportunities in building a public law practice, and the important building blocks lawyers should consider in pursuing a successful public law career.

Topics of discussion will include:

  • Self-assessment and exploring career opportunities (10 min)
  • Nature of public law practice (15 min)
  • Mentors and fostering mentoring relationships (10 min)
  • Critical skills development (10 min)
  • Career paths in the public sector (10 min)
  • The role of networking in career development (10 min)
  • Career and work life balance (10 min)

Session F: R v Jordan and Delays in the Criminal Justice System

This program contains 75 minutes of Substantive Content

  • The Honourable Chris de Sa, Superior Court of Justice (Ontario)
  • Susan Lee, Assistant Crown Attorney, Crown Attorney’s Office (Ontario)
  • Sherif Foda, Associate, Bottomley Barristers
  • Janani Shanmuganathan, Associate, Erin Dann
  • Moderated by: Emily Lam, Partner, Greenwood Lam LLP

The Supreme Court of Canada decision in R v Jordan has changed the landscape of s.11b jurisprudence. This panel will discuss the practical implications of prosecuting and defending cases in the criminal, regulatory and civil context. Learn about the meaning of “unreasonable delay” post-Jordan, how the decision has changed the responsibilities and obligations of counsel and judges, and strategic considerations in litigating cases in a post-Jordan era.

Session G: IP Without Tears: An Intellectual Property Law Update for the Uninitiated

This program contains 15 minutes of Professionalism Content and 60 minutes of Substantive Content

  • Peter Choe, Partner, Gowling WLG
  • Stephanie Chong, Partner, Hoffer Adler LLP
  • Sana Halwani, Partner, Lenczner Slaght
  • Moderated by: Hung Nguyen, Partner, Deeth Williams Wall

This panel will discuss how recent major Canadian and foreign cases in the areas of patent, trademark, copyright, and technology will impact companies doing business in Canada.

On the patent side, hear about the largest reported damage award in a Canadian patent infringement case, new threshold for establishing the utility of a Canadian patent, and the loss of right to sue for patent infringement in a “Rocket Docket” court in the US. (20 mins)

A rare interlocutory injunction has been granted in a trademark infringement case in Canada. Also learn about a novel case to decide on landlords’ liability over tenants’ counterfeit goods in Canada, the legality of keyword advertising and sponsored links in Canada, and registrability of disparaging trademarks in the US. (20 mins)

In terms of copyright and technology, better understand the impact on Canadian postsecondary institutions of the Federal Court of Canada’s rejection of “fair dealing” defense, the enforceability of forum selection clauses in online contracts, and the “worldwide” injunction against Google upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada. (20 mins)

This panel will finish with a 15 minute discussion by the panelists about their career paths, and for questions.

4:00pm to 4:50pm

Standing Together for Mental Health and Wellness

This program contains 50 minutes of Professionalism Content
  • Doron Gold, Staff Clinician, Homewood Health
  • Megan Seto, Associate, Dentons
  • Darryl Singer, Principal, SINGER Barristers Professional Corporation
  • Moderated by: Carissa Wong, Principal, Carissa M. Wong, Barrister and Solicitor
Many legal professionals suffer from clinically significant substance abuse, depression, anxiety or other forms of psychopathy. Others want to proactively manage stress and maintain mental wellness but find this difficult. The stigma of mental health issues can keep lawyers from confronting their struggles, and from giving themselves permission for self-care and to seek help. What are the signs of addiction and serious mental health problems? What treatment options and resources exist? How can you strengthen your mental resilience and fitness? Hear from a lawyer turned staff clinician (at Homewood Health) and psychotherapist, as well as two lawyers who will share their stories, on anxiety, depression, addiction, and recovery. This inclusive and interactive session will help participants develop more mindfulness and awareness in their legal practice, and create a safe space of support in building a community of greater mental health and wellness.
4:50pm to 5:00pm

Closing Remarks

5:00pm to 6:30pm

Cocktail Reception

At the Duke of Westminster (First Canadian Place)

Cash Bar

6:30pm to 9:00pm

Dinner and Awards Ceremony

Business Attire


Platinum Sponsors

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Small Firm Sponsors