Federation of Ontario Law Associations


FOLA's November 2019 Plenary was titled “Ignite Your Membership” and was designed to offer valuable ideas to help you serve your members.  Check out our photos!


VIDEOS (Plenary Playlist on YouTube)

(NOTE:  Want quick links for CPD accredited Plenary videos?  Check out "Media 101 For Lawyers" (0.5 hrs), "Effective Strategies for Client/Lawyer Communications" (0.5 hrs), "Coach & Advisor Network Presentation" (0.5 hrs), "FOLA  LawPRO Briefing" (1 hr), and "2019 Legal Trends - Clio" (1 hr).



You may have already noticed, but the AG’s talk generated some press and FOLA’s Chair, Mike Winward, was interviewed by a number of media outlets, including the Globe & Mail, Toronto Star affiliate QP Briefing (an inside Queen’s Park daily), the Law Times,  Lawyers Daily, and CBC Radio




Hon. Doug Downey, Attorney General of Ontario


Hon. Doug Downey, MPP was elected to represent the riding of Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte in the 2018 provincial election. Doug initially served as Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Finance and was later appointed as Attorney General in June of 2018. 

Prior to his election, Doug was a practicing real estate lawyer, Laurentian University professor, and municipal councillor. Doug received his law degree from Dalhousie University and opened Downey Tornosky Lassaline & Timpano Law in 2001. Doug was very active in the Ontario Bar Association, serving as both secretary and treasurer before his election as MPP. 

Chief Justice George R. Strathy


The Honourable George R. Strathy was appointed to the Court of Appeal for Ontario on April 25, 2013, and was subsequently appointed as Chief Justice of Ontario and President of the Court of Appeal for Ontario on June 13, 2014.

For the previous five years, he served as a judge of the Superior Court of Justice in the Toronto Region, where he presided over civil, class action and criminal matters. He was appointed to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on December 13, 2007.

Chief Justice Strathy received a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University in 1970 and a Master of Arts from the University of Toronto in 1971. He studied law at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law where he received his LL.B. in 1974 and was awarded the Gold Medal. He was called to the Ontario Bar in 1976.

In practice, he specialized in civil litigation, with an emphasis on maritime and transportation law. He was active in a number of professional organizations, including the Canadian Bar Association, the Canadian Maritime Law Association and the Canadian Association of Maritime Arbitrators. He is the author of two books on maritime law, as well as numerous papers and articles.

Chief Justice Strathy is married to Elyse Strathy. They have five daughters and nine grandchildren.

Malcolm M. Mercer, Treasurer, LSO


Malcolm M. Mercer was re-elected as Treasurer for a second term by the Law Society’s governing body on June 27, 2019. The Treasurer is the top-elected official of the Law Society, which regulates Ontario’s lawyers and paralegals in the public interest.

Elected as a bencher in 2011, 2015 and 2019, he became Treasurer in June 2018. Prior to that, he served as Chair of the Advertising and Fee Arrangements Issues Working Group, Chair of the Professional Regulation Committee and Co-Chair of the Alternative Business Structures Working Group. He also served on numerous other Law Society committees, task forces and working groups and was an active member of the Law Society Tribunal.

Sasha Sud, Director Smart Cities MaRS Partnerships


Sasha leads the Smart Cities practice as part of the Partnerships team at MaRS. This practice aims to catalyze the adoption of innovation to enable the quick-paced transformations being experienced in the Smart Cities sector and specifically includes their convergence and integration between and across key emerging technology areas, such as mobility, buildings and energy. 


Prior to his work at MaRS, Sasha lead the design and delivery of smart-grid enabled conservation and demand response programs for the govt. of Ontario.  Sasha received a distinction from the University of Oxford, for an MSc. Environmental Change and Management - where he specialized in Environmental Finance, Energy Management and Climate Change. 

Diana Miles, CEO, LSO


Diana Miles is the Chief Executive Officer of the Law Society of Ontario. 

Diana joined the Law Society in 2001 as the Executive Director of Professional Competence, and has also held positions in the organization including Executive Director, Organizational Strategy, Executive Director of Communications and Executive Director of Professional Regulation. 

Throughout her career with the Law Society, Diana has been responsible for strategic and operational planning, the creation of defensible and valid licensing and credentialing systems, the development and provision of high quality supports and resources for members of the public and licensees, and the regulation and quality assurance of the conduct, competence and practice management of lawyers and paralegals.

Rio Peterson, Affinity Program, Clio


Rio Peterson joined Clio in 2017, initially as a member of Clio’s award-winning Customer Support team. After gaining in-depth knowledge of Clio’s products and customers, Rio took the

stage to speak at the 2018 Clio Cloud Conference. Now in her role as Clio’s Affinity Program Coordinator, Rio works to build and foster relationships with legal associations. She is

passionate about helping legal professionals succeed, and harnessing the power of data to foster collaboration across the industry. 

In her free time she knits, hikes with her dog, Olive, and watches horror movies.  (Olive sometimes watches horror movies with Rio, but isn’t very into knitting.)

Get a sneak peek on Clio's 2019 Trends Report here.

Dan Pinnington, President & CEO, LawPRO


Dan Pinnington is President & CEO of the Lawyers’ Professional Indemnity Company (LawPRO),  the mandatory legal malpractice carrier for 27,600 Ontario lawyers, and offers title insurance across Canada.  He was the driving force behind practicePRO, LAWPRO’s innovative and internationally recognized claims prevention initiative. It provides lawyers with tools and resources to assist them in avoiding malpractice claims and succeeding in the practice of law.  

Dan is a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management and is a prolific writer, speaker and blogger (AvoidAClaim.com and SLAW.ca) on risk management, legal technology and law practice management issues. He has chaired dozens of major conferences and is a veteran of hundreds of presentations at law firms, CPD programs and conferences all over North America.

He was Chair of the American Bar Association’s ABA TECHSHOW 2007 and was Editor-in-Chief of the ABA’s Law Practice Magazine for many years. He co-authored the Busy Lawyer’s Guide to Success: Essential Tips to Power Your Practice with Reid Trautz, and has contributed chapters to several other books published by ABA’s Law Practice Division. He was one of the founding editors of the ABA Law Practice Today webzine.

Dan is also active with the Ontario and Canadian Bar Associations. He was on the CBA’s Conflicts of Interest Task Force and was Co-chair of the 2010 Canadian Legal Conference. He Co-chaired the Law Society of Upper Canada’s Solo and Small Firm Conference and Expo from 2005-2013.

Dan has a combined LL.B./J.D. from the Universities of Windsor and Detroit Mercy and was called to the Ontario Bar in 1993. Prior to joining LAWPRO in 2001, Dan practiced for eight years in the Litigation Department of a Niagara Falls area law firm.  

Follow and connect with Dan!

Blog: AvoidAClaim.com 

LinkedIn: Dan Pinnington

Twitter: @danpinnington

Bob Pickard, Co-Founder & Principal, Signal Leadership Communication Inc.


Based at Toronto, Bob is co-founder and Principal of Signal Leadership Communication Inc., a social public relations consultancy designed for executives dealing with digital disruption.

Having built award-winning public relations businesses based in the United States, Japan, Korea, Singapore and Canada – and with one of the largest social media communities in the PR world – Bob is a leading executive in the international communications trade. He was recently listed as the only Canadian national in PR Week of London’s ‘Global Power Book’ of the industry’s top executives.

Bob has twenty-nine years of experience focused on providing counsel and creating communications campaigns for senior business leaders in North America and Asia-Pacific (including, over the years, coaching hundreds of executives and staffing Bill Gates, Donald Trump, George Soros, and Nicky Oppenheimer). His clients have included Astra-Zeneca, Bayer, De Beers, Goldman Sachs, Government of Canada, GSK, Hewlett-Packard, Huawei, ING, Johnson & Johnson, Kia Motors, Merck, Microsoft, Nissan, Nomura, PayPal, Pfizer, Sanofi-Aventis, and Standard & Poor’s.  

Read his full bio here.

And follow him on Twitter here.

Lana Saleh, Lawyer, Facilitator, Coach, Consultant


Lana is a bilingual speaker, facilitator and coach who specializes in bringing emotional intelligence skills to the justice system. She delivers Law Society accredited training and testing specifically designed to meet the needs of today’s lawyers. She travels across Ontario and abroad offering emotional intelligence solutions in areas such as leadership and team building, business development and employee and client relationships. 

With over 15 years of public education experience, Lana combines her expertise in psychology, communication, law, theatre and equity work to provide a unique and integrated approach to the practice of law and the training and services she provides. 

Lana works with individuals, firms and organizations. She tackles difficult concepts in a generous, tangible and professional way. Her goal is to inspire a kinder more empowering justice system through communication, collaboration and compassion. Join her.  

Ruth Chun, Virtual General Counsel (specializing in the Cannabis Industry)


Ruth Chun is the former general counsel and corporate secretary for Newstrike Brands Ltd. / Up Cannabis Inc. and senior legal counsel at HEXO Corp.  HEXO Corp. acquired Newstrike in an all share deal valued at $346 million in Q3 2019.   Ruth is currently a virtual GC for both cannabis and non-cannabis firms and is a regularly sought after speaker for her expertise in the cannabis industry.  Ruth joined Newstrike in February 2017 and was involved in all significant corporate activity including a successful TSXV listing, debt and equity financings (exceeding $140 million), compliance, regulatory and M&A matters and government relations.  

She is regularly called upon as a speaker and industry expert.  She serves on several boards including the Cannabis Council of Canada and SAVIS of Halton.  Prior to her foray into the cannabis industry, she served as the first female executive at a leading insurer in southern Africa as the head of legal and compliance and was a partner at Africa's largest law firm.  She was also chair of Rio Tinto's pension fund for Rossing Uranium Mine and a trustee of the Alexander Forbes group of funds. She received an Hon BA (Trinity College) and MA from the University of Toronto and Juris Doctor from Queens University.  Ruth is admitted to legal practice in Ontario, New York and Namibia.  She is the founder of Chun Law Professional Corporation and advises cannabis companies at various stages of growth, including publicly traded companies and private companies seeking licensing.  

Kerry Boniface, Director, Practice Supports & Resources Department, LSO


Kerry Boniface is the Director of the Practice Supports and Resources Department at the Law Society of Ontario. Her teams support lawyers and paralegals navigate the choppy waters of ethical quandaries and professional boundaries through the Practice Management Helpline and gain insight, inspiration and practical information on substantive and procedural legal issues through the Coach and Advisor Network

Kerry’s work prompts lawyers and paralegals into more active engagement in their careers. With her teams, she creates environments and tools to assist others to identify the challenges they face and harness the resources they need to propel them forward. 

Kerry was called to the Bar in Ontario in 1999, holds a Certificate in Adult Learning and Development from OISE and a graduate level certificate in Executive Coaching from Royal Roads University. 




 LAWPRO provides professional liability insurance in Ontario and title insurance across Canada. It also insures law firms under its optional excess insurance.

Cost-effective professional liability insurance, expert claims administration, and proactive risk management initiatives are the core of our operation.

CLIO  - software for legal practice management


Founded in 2008, Clio empowers law firms to be client-centered and firm-focused. Offering legal practice management software, client intake and legal CRM software, and the largest app ecosystem on the market, Clio's product suite is trusted by 150,000 legal professionals and approved by over 65 bar associations and law societies, globally. 

Learn more at clio.com and follow them on Twitter at @goclio

Law Society of Ontario


The Law Society of Ontario governs Ontario’s lawyers and paralegals in the public interest by ensuring that the people of Ontario are served by lawyers and paralegals who meet high standards of learning, competence and professional conduct.

The Law Society regulates, licenses and disciplines Ontario’s more than 50,000 lawyers and over 8,000 licensed paralegals pursuant to the Law Society Act and the Law Society's rules, regulations and guidelines. 



CPDonline.ca is the leading provider of on-demand CPD Videos for lawyers.

CPDonline.ca is offering Ontario law association members a calendar year subscription to access any and all videos for only $199.50 + HST. This is 50% off the regular subscription price. Their video library is extensive and includes hundreds of hours of programming from a variety of law associations covering a large variety of practice areas with both professionalism and substantive content.

financial solutions exclusively for lawyers, their families and employees


Lawyers Financial is a brand of The Canadian Bar Insurance Association (CBIA). Providing a comprehensive suite of financial solutions exclusively for lawyers, their families and employees is all we do. Being not-for-profit, we measure success in satisfied clients, not dollars. No matter the situation, we can help you to be ready.

travel & tours around the world -luxury


As the world's largest private education company, EF Go Ahead Tours knows that travel is the best way to learn about the world. With over 50 years of experience and a rich network of local experts, their tours make it easy to get to the heart of a destination.   

FOLA is proud to partner with GoAhead to be able to offer custom tours.  Learn more at:  https://grouptoursite.ca/fola