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Board of Directors

President

Hillson Tse is a criminal and regulatory defence lawyer at RGZ Law in Toronto. In addition to a criminal trial practice focusing on impaired driving and assault offences, he also represents studentsin university academic misconduct hearings. Hillson has defended clients in trial courts across Ontario, British Columbia, and Manitoba on charges ranging from homicide to corporate fraud.


Hillson has chaired the FACL Mentorship Committee and the Advocacy and Policy Committee in his previous two years as a Director.


Hillson is also a Director with the Hong Fook Mental Health Association which provides culturally competent care to Asian and Southeast-Asian communities in Toronto. He is an active member of the Criminal Lawyers' Association (CLA).


Hillson credits his ongoing legal progression to strong mentorship that started in law school and remains active in mentorship activities through organizations like FACL, the First-Generation Network, and the CLA. He also coaches the OJEN Mock Trial competition for high school students.

Vice-President External

David Spence-Valenzuela is an Assistant Crown Attorney with the Ministry of the Attorney General in Toronto where he specialises in the prosecution of child abuse and internet child exploitation offences, and acts as inquest counsel in coroner’s inquests. Prior to joining the Crown Attorney’s Office, David was a litigator at Stikeman Elliott LLP where he practiced civil litigation with an emphasis on professional liability and regulatory law. He has appeared as counsel at all levels of court in Ontario as well as various domestic and international arbitration panels.

David volunteers regularly at The 519 Legal Clinic supporting 2SLGBTQ+ communities and with the Royal Canadian Air Cadets, a national youth program administered by the Canadian Armed Forces. He teaches trial advocacy in the Law Practice Program at Toronto Metropolitan University and coaches the OJEN Mock Trial competition for high school students.

David is the Chair of FACL's 2SLGBTQ+ Committee and is Co-Chair of the Partnerships Committee. He  has chaired the Communications Committee in his previous two years as a Director.

Vice-President Internal

Daniel is a partner at WeirFoulds LLP and the chair of its Employment Law Group. He advises employers on all aspects of employment and labour relations including employee hiring and terminations, employment standards compliance, unfair practice and human rights complaints and the development and execution of initiatives and policies. He represents employers before the courts on wrongful dismissal and provincial offence matters, and before various administrative tribunals on rights arbitration, employment standards issues, human rights complaints, occupational health and safety Daniel is a partner at WeirFoulds LLP and the chair of its Employment Law Group. He advises employers on all aspects of employment and labour relations including employee hiring and terminations, employment standards compliance, unfair practice and human rights complaints and the development and execution of initiatives and policies. He represents employers before the courts on wrongful dismissal and provincial offence matters, and before various administrative tribunals on rights arbitration, employment standards issues, human rights complaints, occupational health and safety investigations and workers’ compensation appeals. Prior to joining WeirFoulds, Daniel articled investigations and workers’ compensation appeals. Prior to joining WeirFoulds, Daniel articled and practiced at a large management-side boutique firm, and then was Employment Counsel and Privacy Manager at a national food service corporation before returning to private practice at a large national business law firm. He is a presenter at conferences and training seminars and the author of over 30 articles and publications, and has also delivered guest lectures at York University in the areas of employment and labour law.


Daniel is recognized as a leading practitioner in labour and employment law by Best Lawyers in Canada.


Daniel was a board member of the Yee Hong Centre for Geriatric Care from 2011 to 2020, where he assumed various leadership roles on the board and its various committees including Chair of the Social Enterprise Committee (2013-2015), Vice Chair of the Board (2015-2018) and Chair of the Governance Committee (2016-2018).


Daniel is a graduate of Queen’s University’s schools of Business (Comm’97), Policy Studies (MIR’98) and Law (’01).

Treasurer

Alexis Eun Young Choi is a Legal Counsel at Hydro One Networks Inc., with a broad practice in securities law and corporate finance, as well as real estate law. She graduated from Osgoode Hall Law School and obtained her MA and BA from the University of Toronto. Prior to law school, Alexis worked in project management at a regulatory body for physiotherapists, where she spearheaded national and provincial projects.


Alexis is an enthusiastic advocate for mentorship, access to justice, and equity, diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. In the past year, she has been active as the Secretary of FACL Ontario’s board of directors and the Chair of the Mentorship Committee, after previously being a dedicated member of the Mentorship Committee. She also serves as a director on the boards of YWCA Toronto, an organization dedicated to improving the lives of women, girls, and gender diverse people, and Orchestra Toronto, an orchestra that makes symphonic music accessible, fosters education and supports emerging Canadian talent.

Secretary

Vacant

Chair of ESL/FLQ Committee

Jack Yu is a Partner at Fasken and is engaged in a broad corporate/commercial practice. With a focus on private mergers and acquisitions, Jack advises clients on a variety of transactions, including acquisitions and disposals, private equity transactions, corporate finance and commercial agreements.


As Co-Leader of Fasken’s China Subgroup, Jack regularly travels to China and is actively involved in the Asian legal community in Canada. He is often relied on by Chinese clients both from overseas and in Canada for legal advice and day-to-day legal issues. Jack also has experience in the foreign investments review process in Canada.


Jack chairs FACL Ontario’s English as Second Language and Foreign Qualified Lawyers Committee. He immigrated to Canada from China as a teenager, and is passionate about helping lawyers and students who face additional barriers due to language, generational, cultural or jurisdictional gaps.

Chair of FACL Ottawa

Jennifer Ho is an Associate Lawyer with Kimberley A. Pegg, Barristers, specializing in criminal defence and child protection litigation. Jennifer regularly appears in the Ontario Court of Justice and the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.


Jennifer previously articled at a small full-service firm in Ottawa, focusing on criminal law, civil litigation and family law. She has also interned for the Department of Justice – War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity Section, the Ontario Court of Justice, and a leading sole practitioner in criminal defence.


Prior to her career in law, Jennifer received her Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from the University of Ottawa where she worked in comparative physiology and stem cell research. She also holds an Associate Diploma from the Trinity College of London in Recital in Solo Piano and taught private piano lessons for 13 years.


Jennifer is the Chair of the FACL Ottawa Committee.

Chair of GTA North

Ronald Trac is the Principal and Founder of Ronald Trac Law, a law firm in Toronto specializing in the areas of corporate/commercial and real estate law. He enjoys working with entrepreneurs, in both start-up and mid-size companies, and helping them solve the legal issues that their businesses may encounter.


Ron has been a FACL member for several years and currently chairs FACL’s GTA North Committee, and is an active member of the Community Outreach Committee (COC). Ron’s goal with the GTA North Committee is to expand FACL’s outreach to lawyers outside the downtown Toronto core, as well as small firm lawyers and solo practitioners. The GTA North Committee hosts several events throughout the year, covering a variety of topics in order to bring together lawyers in different parts of the GTA.


Over the past few years, on behalf of the FACL COC and in partnership with Mon Sheong Foundation, Ron has also helped host several public legal education seminars in Cantonese on the topics of Wills and Estates, and CPP/OAS benefits, with a goal of improving legal knowledge and access to justice for Asian minority groups.

Co-Chair of Women’s Committee

Me-Hae Hur is Crown Counsel to the Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario, with the Ministry of Public and Business Service Delivery and the Ministry of Infrastructure. Me-Hae has experience working in various levels of government, ministries, and agencies as both a litigator and solicitor, including the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee, the Office of the Children’s Lawyer, the Government of Nunavut, the Nunavut Court of Justice in Iqaluit, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority and Legal Aid Ontario.


Outside of work, Me-Hae is completing her Master of Laws, LLM, with Osgoode Hall Law School, and enjoys volunteering her time to contribute to the community. Alongside being a Director of FACL Ontario, she is also a board member of several organizations, including the Korean Legal Clinic, the Association of Law Officers of the Crown, as well as past Vice-Chair and current Chair of the OBA’s Public Sector Lawyers Section, and is the Co-Chair of FACL’s Women’s Committee. Recently, Me-Hae was awarded Lexpert’s 2022 Rising Stars Award as a leading lawyer under 40, FACL Ontario’s 2022 Public Sector Lawyer Award, and nominated and shortlisted for the 2022 Canadian Lawyer’s Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers Award.

Co-Chair of Women’s Committee

Jessica Zhang is a Securities Associate at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. Her practice focuses on advising clients on various capital markets transactions, including public offerings and private placements of securities, mergers and acquisitions, and financings. She completed her J.D. at Osgoode Hall Law School where she was awarded the Dean’s Gold Key for student leadership and involvement. Prior to law school, she received her undergraduate degree from Ivey Business School.


At Osgoode, Jessica was the President of the Osgoode Business Law Society and the Vice-President of the Osgoode Women’s Network. She was also involved as a caseworker for the Investor Protection Clinic and Osgoode Business Clinic. In her last year, Jessica participated in the Advanced Business Law Workshop on Mergers & Acquisitions. She also served as a mentor for various student organizations including the Asian Law Students Association.


In her free time, Jessica enjoys spinning, cooking, and watching (too much) reality TV. 

Co-Chair of Awards Committee

Veenu Goswami

Veenu Goswami attended the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law and was called to the Ontario Bar in 2018. His professional experience in law consists of a summer student position at a civil litigation boutique, clerkships at the Court of Appeal for Ontario and the Supreme Court of Canada, and his current position as Crown counsel at the Crown Law Office – Criminal. He has served as a member of FACL’s Mentorship Committee and Awards Committee.

Co-Chair of Awards Committee

Maneesha Gupta is an Intellectual Property and Technology lawyer. Her practice focuses on brand protection and enforcement, which includes all aspects of patents, trademarks and copyrights; commercializing innovations including outsourcing transactions, licensing and privacy; and regulatory considerations related to artificial intelligence and emerging technologies.


Maneesha is an active member of the legal profession and regularly advocates for the advancement of women, diversity and inclusion and access to justice. Before joining FACL as Mentorship Chair, Maneesha founded a local chapter of the United Nations Development Program, a grassroots economic development organization. She has represented the City of Toronto as the official hostess of the International Indian Film Awards.


Maneesha completed her undergraduate degree at University of Toronto - Victoria University and is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School. She judges various national advocacy competitions and has guest lectured at Osgoode Hall Law School and the Ted Rogers School of Management.


Maneesha is a frequent speaker and writer on technology and intellectual property law.

Co-Chair of COC

Ryan Chan is an associate at Corman Feiner LLP where he primarily practices administrative law and commercial litigation.


Ryan is a passionate (social) advocate acting as a board member and project lead at the Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice where he is a frequent public speaker that has been featured in various media outlets including CBC, the Globe & Mail and the Toronto Star.


In his free time, Ryan is an avid scuba diver and is very proud to have received his G2 driver’s license this past year.

Co-Chair of Communications and COC

Gregory Ko is a partner at Kastner Ko LLP, with expertise in employment law, human rights, administrative law, and civil litigation.

Greg represents clients in workplace disputes at all levels of court in Ontario. He also acts for professional regulators and regulated professionals in disciplinary proceedings. Greg has an extensive public interest litigation practice, with a focus on constitutional law, administrative law, and LGBTQ rights. Greg also acts an independent investigator in highly sensitive matters for a wide range of organizations, including universities, hospitals, and not-for-profits organizations.

Greg is an adjunct professor at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. He is the Chair of the OBA’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Caucus and the Vice-Chair of the Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic.

Greg graduated from the McGill Faculty of Law and holds a Master of Laws from the University of Toronto. He practices in English and French, and speaks conversational Cantonese, Spanish, German, and Mandarin.

Co-Chair of Communications

David Ang is a Member at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada. Before joining the IRB, David’s practice focused on family law litigation and Legal Aid work, and he later taught as a full-time professor at Algonquin College in the law clerk and paralegal programs.


In 2020, David helped form the FACL Ottawa Committee, with a continuing mandate is to highlight Asian representation in the Ottawa legal community, and to create programs that serve the needs of Asian law students and legal professionals in Ottawa.


David is a founding member of the County of Carleton Law Association’s Diversity Committee. David also serves on the Ottawa Humane Society’s Board of Directors.

Co-Chair of Advocacy & Policy Committee

Megan Mah is a Partner at WeirFoulds LLP. Her practice focuses on human rights, employment, administrative, regulatory and constitutional law. Megan has represented clients on a range of litigation matters. She regularly advises on workplace-related issues, including workplace policies, accommodation, and performance management. Megan also has experience in facilitating training sessions focused on respect in the workplace, and in conducting workplace investigations. Representing both employers and employees, Megan has worked for clients including private individuals, private companies, public institutions, professional regulators, not-for-profit organizations, and universities.


Megan completed her LL.B. and B.C.L. at McGill University, and served as a board member and the Director of Human and Material Resources at the Legal Information Clinic at McGill. Megan is currently the Chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s Constitutional, Civil Liberties and Human Rights Law Section and a member of the Ontario Bar Association’s Council. She is a member of FACL’s Advocacy & Policy Committee, and is the Vice-Chair and FACL’s representative for the Roundtable of Legal Diversity Associations (RODA). Megan was the recipient of FACL’s 2021 Young Lawyer of the Year Award. She has also been recognized in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in the category of Labour and Employment Law.

Director

Samantha is an Associate in the Commercial Real Estate Group at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (Toronto office), where she also completed her articles.


After two terms as a Student Director on the FACL Ontario Board, Samantha is excited to continue as a Full Director, dedicating her efforts to the FACL Ottawa Committee to organize programs for legal professionals in Ottawa.


Samantha completed her J.D. at the University of Ottawa, which is why she is passionate about servicing the community of her alma mater. While at the University of Ottawa, she was actively involved in the Asian Law Student Society, acting as the Co-President in the 2019-2020 academic year. She was also a Peer Wellness Mentor to first-year students and a Research Assistant in the study of data science and law.


Prior to law school, Samantha grew up in Vancouver, BC and attended Queen’s University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours). Outside of law, she is an avid NBA fan and loves to explore new restaurants. Fun Fact: Samantha used to be a competitive gymnast, coach and judge.

Director

Kenneth Yau-Wing Jim graduated from the University of Ottawa with an Honours BA in History with a second concentration in Criminology in 2004. He then graduated from the University of Windsor’s Law School in 2007. Throughout his university career, Kenneth was heavily involved with volunteering and student associations.

 

Kenneth articled with the union-side labour firm of Jewitt McLuckie and was called to the bar in 2008. Since his call, Kenneth has practiced criminal defence exclusively.

 

Since 2009, Kenneth has been a staff lawyer with Legal Aid Ontario. Since 2010, his practice has been dedicated to criminal trials and appeals. He has defended charges ranging from theft under to first degree murder. He specializes in cases involving Charter violations and bringing applications to exclude evidence or to stay proceedings. He has appeared before all levels of trial and appeal court in Ontario, including the Ontario Review Board.

 

He is currently Senior Criminal Counsel for the GTA, in the Senior Counsel Program at Legal Aid Ontario. Kenneth is also the office’s assigned mentor and principal for students, and over the years, has mentored over 50 summer and articling students. He also mentors younger members of the bar seeking trial experience.

 

Kenneth dedicates a lot of time to the community, and legal profession. He is a volunteer in LSO’s articling mentor program, a tutor for the barrister exam, and provides advice to other lawyers through the Coach and Advisor Network. He is also an active member of the Criminal Lawyers Association.

 

He is the current president of the Association of Chinese Canadian Lawyers of Ontario, and sits on the board of directors for Coral Place (non-profit housing), PLASP (Peel Lunch and After School Program), St. Teresa of Avila Parent and School Council, and FACL’s Policy and Advocacy Committee. In the past, he sat on the board of directors for Yee Hong Geriatric Centre (Human Resources sub-committee), and Mississauga Community Legal Services.

 

He also volunteers extensively with the Ontario Justice Education Network, and has coached high school students for mock bail and trial tournaments. His one team from Gordon Graydon Secondary became the first school to capture both bail and trial championship titles in the same school year. Kenneth is also a mentor through First Generation Network, Ryerson Law School’s mentorship program, and taught trial advocacy in the Ryerson LPP program.

 

Kenneth’s interests include collecting vintage shoes, homage watched, wok cooking, and using charcoal to burn his food.

Student Director

Julia is an incoming articling student at Fasken and graduated from the University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law. Before law school, Julia grew up in Vancouver, BC and completed an Honours Bachelor of Social Sciences in Conflict Studies and Human Rights in French Immersion at the University of Ottawa.


Wanting to contribute her perspective as a first-generation immigrant, Julia has played an active role in her law school community. In consultation with the Faculty Equity Committee and a local non-profit, she drafted the Common Law Student Society’s first Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Policy Manual in her role as VP Equity. Julia also served as a Teaching Assistant for the first-year Legal Foundations course and Dispute Resolution practicum, a Legal Writing Academy leader, and a Peer Mentor for the Allies in Law program. She previously worked with a law professor to research health policies impacting the migrant worker population in Canada.


Outside of law, Julia enjoys spending time with her senior dog, learning new languages and exploring new restaurants. Julia is fluent in Korean and conversational French.

Student Director

Annie Hu obtained her J.D. at Osgoode Hall Law School, where she received the Dean’s Gold Key Award to recognize her contributions to the law school community. She will be articling at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (Toronto Office). Prior to law school, Annie graduated from the University of Toronto with an Honours Bachelor of Arts, double majoring in Music and Criminology, and minoring in Sociology. Annie is fluent in Mandarin and Taiwanese Hokkien.


At Osgoode, Annie served as the Co-President of the Asian Law Students Association and the Vice-Chair of Student Caucus. To help bridge the legal services gap, Annie worked at the Community and Legal Aid Services Program and the Investor Protection Clinic, both of which provide service to vulnerable community. Annie also participated in various negotiations and moots, and represented Osgoode in the 2023 Wilson Moot. As a first-generation law student, Annie is enthusiastic about mentorship. She mentors high school and undergraduate students through Law in Action Within Schools, and coaches undergraduate moot and mock trial teams.


In her free time, Annie enjoys learning new languages, exploring cafés, and creating digital content. Annie is a classically trained pianist and violinist, and an amateur oboist.

Student Director

Jennifer completed her J.D. at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and will be articling at McCarthy Tétrault LLP. At U of T, Jennifer was the co-president of Asia Law Society, the 2021 O-Week Student Coordinator, and the visual coordinator of Ultra Vires, the Faculty’s independent student newspaper. She also volunteered with Pro Bono Students Canada.


Prior to law school, she obtained her Bachelor of Environmental Studie (Honours, Co-op) from the University of Waterloo and Master of City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania. Before embarking on this journey in the legal field, Jennifer was an urban planner for a few years at a global urban design and planning consultancy based in Toronto and worked on a full range of development and master plan projects in Canada and the United States.


Having lived in four countries, Jennifer is also fluent in Mandarin and Japanese. In her free time, Jennifer enjoys digital art and regularly collaborates with other international digital artists.

Student Director

Sophie is an articling student at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. Sophie completed her undergraduate degree in industrial engineering with High Honours at the University of Toronto. She had a wide range of professional experience across industries such as manufacturing, food and beverage, energy, and not-for-profit.


At law school, Sophie received the Students’ Law Society Upper-Year Mentorship Award for her passion in mentorship. She also led the social activities for 1L Orientation 2022 and co-directed Law Follies, the U of T’s premier (and only) revue.


In her free time, Sophie enjoys exploring new restaurants, watching musicals, and playing badminton.

Student Director

Kate is a rising 3L at the Lincoln Alexander School of Law and the past Co-Chair and Director of Finance of the Asia-Pacific Law Students’ Association. She is currently summering at a boutique tax litigation firm and will be interning in-house at a major corporation in Winter 2024. Previously she has worked in ESG, assurance, tax, and consulting.


Before law school she graduated with her Bachelor of Commerce Cooperative Education in Finance from Dalhousie University, earned her CSC®, and studied abroad at the National University of Singapore. During the year, she has been involved with Pro Bono Ontario, the Legal Innovation Zone, Law Games, the Canadian Association of Business Students. In her free time, Kate loves backpacking, crocheting, knitting, horticulture, and baking.


Kate has sat on the FACL ON past during 2022-23 and other Boards of Directors in the past. She is excited to continue her work with governance, finance, and student support in the upcoming year.

Student Director

Yiwei is an incoming 3L at Queen’s Law and a summer student at Metcalfe Blainey & Burns LLP. Yiwei competed in the Arnup Cup, representing Queen’s and will be an articling student at Sudbury Crown's Attorney's Office.


Yiwei had his undergraduate education in Beijing, China and earned a master's degree in physical chemistry at Queen's University. Before law school, Yiwei was the co-founder and sales director of an organic goji berry products supplier, a freelance web designer and a digital marketing agent.


Out of work, Yiwei likes to read and think about political science and social justice. Yiwei is a portrait photographer, a Japanese mahjong lover who plays badminton regularly.