As of October 25, 2022
Rachel Curran, Ottawa (Lay Member), Chair
Rachel Curran is a lawyer by training, and has nearly 15 years of experience in public affairs, including extensive experience providing strategic and policy advice to the Prime Minister of Canada and federal and provincial Cabinet ministers. As Director of Policy to the Prime Minister, Rachel was closely engaged in all matters involving the federal government, including foreign and defence policy, trade negotiations, economic affairs, immigration, transportation, energy and the environment, indigenous affairs, social development and intergovernmental relations. She was directly responsible for setting and implementing the government’s policy agenda over the course of four years, and oversaw all major governmental initiatives including the preparation of the annual federal budget. At the provincial level, as Chief of Staff and advisor to two senior Cabinet ministers, Rachel provided advice on a range of political, policy and legislative issues related to public safety, including law enforcement, residential tenancy, consumer protection, automobile insurance, road safety, gaming, liquor licensing and distribution, and provincial emergency management. In the last five years, Rachel has worked as a senior associate with Harper & Associates Ltd., an international consulting firm led by former Prime Minister Harper, and as an instructor at Carleton University’s Riddell Program in Political Management. She also appeared as a regular panelist and commentator on CBC’s Power & Politics, and was a recurring contributor to the Institute for Research on Public Policy’s Policy Options magazine. Rachel currently works as a member of the public policy team for Facebook Canada.
Madam Justice Jeanine LeRoy, Regional Senior Justice, London
Justice Jeanine LeRoy is the Regional Senior Justice for the West Region of the Ontario Court of Justice. As the Regional Senior Justice, Justice LeRoy exercises the powers of the Chief Justice in her region, subject to the authority of the Chief Justice. This includes scheduling court hearings and assigning cases to individual judges. Previously, Justice LeRoy served as the Local Administrative Judge in London, and as a member of the Court’s Education Secretariat in her roles as an Education Co-Chair for the West Region and as the Conference Coordinator for the Association of Ontario Judges. Prior to her appointment to the bench in 2011, she was certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a Specialist in Criminal Law. In addition to extensive criminal trial experience throughout Southwestern Ontario, Justice LeRoy argued appeals on a regular basis at the Court of Appeal and in the Superior Court of Justice. She also served as a Director of the Criminal Lawyers Association (Ontario) and as President of the Criminal Lawyers Association (London). She graduated from the University of British Columbia Law School in 1991 and was called to the Bar in 1993. Justice LeRoy is appointed to the Committee by the Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice.
Madam Justice Lise S. Parent, Brampton
Justice Lise Parent is the Senior Advisory Family Judge of the Ontario Court of Justice. In this role, Justice Parent advises the Chief Justice on family matters across the province. Previously, Justice Parent served as the Local Administrative Judge (Family) in Brampton, and as a member of the Court’s Education Secretariat in her role as Conference Co-Chair (Family). Justice Parent is a graduate of the University of Ottawa Law School and was called to the Bar in 1989. She is fluently bilingual. Prior to her appointment to the bench in 2013, she practised exclusively family law, including child protection, in Ottawa. Justice Parent was a panel member for the Office of the Children’s Lawyer and the Family Responsibility Office. She is also a former president of the Carleton County Law Association. Justice Parent is appointed to the Committee by the Ontario Judicial Council.
Mr. Justice Riun Shandler, Toronto
Justice Riun Shandler was appointed a Judge of the Ontario Court of Justice in 2014. He currently serves as the Local Administrative Judge for the Metro North Courthouse in Toronto and as the Education Co-Chair (Criminal) for the Court’s Education Secretariat and Association of Ontario Judges. Prior to his appointment, he worked at the Ministry of the Attorney General for Ontario, Crown Law Office – Criminal where his practice focussed on large and complex trials and appeals. Justice Shandler is an adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School teaching mental health and criminal justice to upper year and LLM students. He is an active participant in continuing legal education and is the co-author of Mental Disorder in Canadian Criminal Law (Carswell) with Joan Barrett. He graduated from the University of British Columbia Law School in 1995 and was called to the Ontario bar in 1997. Justice Shandler is appointed to the Committee by the Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice.
Kavita Bhagat, Brampton (Lawyer)
Kavita has practiced law for over 20 years. In February 2015, she was designated as a Certified Specialist in Family Law by the Law Society of Ontario (LSO). Kavita is an accredited Family Mediator, Arbitrator, Parenting Coordinator and a former Panel Lawyer for the Office of the Children’s Lawyer. She offers evaluative Voice of the Child Reports. She is also trained to provide Collaborative Family Law services. Kavita is a regular presenter for the Ontario Justice Education Network and various continuing professional development programs through the Ontario Bar Association, LSO, Peel Law Association, etc. She is also an Alternate Dispute Resolution instructor at York University. As a first-generation immigrant, giving back to the community and the profession is important to her. Kavita is a former board member of the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario and past-President of the Peel Chapter of the Ontario Association of Family Mediators. She currently serves as the treasurer for Peel Mediation Arbitration. She is a former board member of the Caledon Parent and Child Centre, Ontario Early Years. Kavita currently serves as the fund development coordinator and board member of Volunteer MBC, a not-for-profit that oversees 220 plus not-for-profits in the Region of Peel. Kavita is appointed to the Committee as the Ontario Bar Association representative.
Gerald Chan, Toronto (Lawyer)
Gerald is a partner at Stockwoods LLP, where he practises criminal, constitutional, and regulatory litigation. He has been counsel in numerous cases in the Supreme Court of Canada and he is a member of the Ontario Inmate Appeal Duty Counsel Program (a roster of lawyers who argue pro bono appeals for indigent inmates in the Court of Appeal for Ontario). Gerald has been recognized as a leading practitioner by Best Lawyers in Canada, Lexpert, and Benchmark Litigation. He is co-editor of For the Defence; associate editor of the Canadian Rights Reporter; co-author of Sentencing, 9th ed. (LexisNexis, 2017); and co-author of Digital Evidence: A Practitioner’s Handbook (Emond, 2017). He sits on the Board of the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers. Before his call to the bar, Gerald clerked for the Honourable Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella at the Supreme Court of Canada and graduated from Osgoode Hall Law School as the co-gold medallist. Gerald is appointed by The Law Society of Ontario to this Committee.
Cheryl Siran, Kenora (Lawyer)
Cheryl graduated from the University of Manitoba with her Bachelor of Laws in 2005 and was called to the Ontario Bar in 2006. She has been in private practice in Kenora, Ontario, since that time and is currently the managing partner at the firm of Hook, Seller and Lundin LLP. Cheryl’s practice is split between transactional work and construction, estate and general litigation. Cheryl has been actively volunteering in the provincial legal community throughout her career despite the challenges of doing so from a rural/remote location in the province. Cheryl is currently a Bencher with the Law Society of Ontario, as of June 28, 2022. She is also a current Board member of the Ontario Deputy Judges Association and in her community, a Board Member with the Pellatt United Firefighters Board (PUFF). Her prior volunteer work includes being Past Chair of the Federation of Ontario Law Associations (FOLA), formerly the County and District Law Presidents’ Association (CDLPA) from 2011 to 2018, a volunteer on the provincial Board for LibraryCo from November 2015 to December 2019, as well as serving as Secretary-Treasurer, Vice-President and two terms as the President of the Kenora District Law Association. Cheryl is appointed to the Committee as the Federation of Ontario Law Associations representative.
Geewadin Elliott, Neyaashiinigmiing (Lay Member)
Geewadin Elliott was born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario and is a proud Potawatomi Anishinabe citizen of the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation in Neyaashiinigmiing. He has 20 years of concurrent public service and Indigenous relations experience advising government, private and public companies on culture, socioeconomics, relationship building and community engagement protocols. In 2019, after a 15-year career with the Ontario Provincial Police and Rama Police Service (Detective Constable), Geewadin pivoted toward First Nations business development and now enjoys his role with Aecon Group Inc. as Manager for Indigenous Relations for Canada-East. As a forward-thinking Indigenous leader, Geewadin has a vision to build strong partnerships among First Nations throughout the Great Lakes area to promote knowledge sharing and capacity development. Through his initiative (The Potawatomi Nation Economic Development Summit), tribal and business leaders from the United States and Canada meet quarterly to discuss nation building, economic development and trade. In 2014, Geewadin was appointed by leadership as community trustee for the Edkaagmik Nbiizh Neyaashiinigamiingninwag Edbendaagzijig Trust (Coldwater Land Claim). He proudly serves on the Board of Governors at St. Andrew’s College in Aurora and as an elected council member of The Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation. Geewadin earned a Bachelor of Arts degree (Marketing) from Michigan State University in 1999 and a diploma from the Ontario Police College in 2006, where he was selected as class leader by command staff. Geewadin enjoys cultural gatherings with his family and is a woodland style pow wow dancer.
Bronwen Evans, Toronto (Lay Member)
Bronwen Evans is the Chief Growth Officer with executive oversight of all Sales, Marketing and Communications functions at Medcan Health Management. At Medcan, she has also held the positions of Chief Talent Officer (2019-2021), Chief Privacy Officer, and Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Affairs (2007-2012). Bronwen is a founding Director of the True Patriot Love Foundation and served as its first CEO from 2012 to 2019, raising more than $38 million to support 25,000 Canadian military and veteran families. She also has a successful track record in running her own communications and public affairs consulting firm for six years with a roster of clients from the energy, healthcare, legal, and government sectors. Prior to her time in business, Bronwen was the Chief of Staff to the Ontario Minister of Finance, the Chief of Staff to the Attorney General, and a senior advisor to the Minister of Community and Social Services, and the Minister of Health. Bronwen is the Chair of Kingsway College School and has served as a Director on the boards of Cronos Group, the National Ballet of Canada, the 2016 Orlando Invictus Games, The Canadian Club, and Youth Without Shelter. She is a recipient of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012). Bronwen holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from McGill University, and a Master of Arts in Philosophy from Carleton University, and is a graduate of the ICD-Rotman Directors Education Program.
Holly Haire, Wasaga Beach (Lay Member)
Holly Haire obtained her diploma in business from Georgian College in 2004. Following her graduation, she worked as the Special Events Coordinator for the Town of Wasaga Beach. After six years in this position, she moved on to become the Executive Assistant to the Member of Parliament for Simcoe Grey. Holly opened her own business in 2016, an indoor playground facility in Collingwood, Ontario. She sold that business in 2020 and is now the owner and operator of an event company that serves Simcoe County. Volunteering and giving back to her community are priorities for Holly. She has served as President for the Rotary Club of Wasaga Beach, is a previous board member for Big Brothers Big Sisters of The Georgian Triangle, and actively participates in many community-based fundraisers and initiatives. Holly was recognized as “Wasaga’s Finest Citizen” for making a difference in her community and is a Paul Harris Fellow through Rotary International for her dedication to volunteering.
Scott Munnoch, Toronto (Lay Member)
Scott Munnoch joined the government and public relations firm of Temple Scott Associates in 2010 and is now one of three partners. After beginning his career in corporate public affairs, Scott transitioned into government, working closely with many Canadian leaders, both federally and provincially. Starting as an event coordinator, he served as Executive Assistant to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tour Director for the Prime Minister of Canada and a Senior Advisor to the Premier of Ontario. Scott has been active in government and public relations for over 25 years and has represented both the governments of Ontario and Canada on the international stage. He has played senior roles in the coordination of international summits and tours, including the G-7 Summits, the Commonwealth Summits, Royal Tours and state visits. In 1997, Scott was named as a Member of the Royal Victorian Order (M.V.O.) by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for his work on the Royal Tours to Canada. Scott is a graduate of both Queen’s University and the University of Windsor, where he also played varsity football. He served as President of the Albany Club of Toronto from 2014-2016.
Keith Strachan, Barrie (Lay Member)
Keith Strachan is the President and co-founder of MediPharm Labs, a publicly listed TSX company focused on the pharmaceutical application of cannabinoids. In 2015, Keith utilized his expertise in compliance for government licensing and local planning, to break the mould and secure the first Health Canada Licence for cannabis oil production. This then contributed to other industry leading pharmaceutical certifications from both Health Canada and global regulatory bodies. A seasoned entrepreneur, Keith has applied his leadership to building out MediPharm Labs’ leading-edge facilities, launching operations and growing its workforce, while also strategically driving business development with the company’s customers in Canada, Australia, South America, and the European Union. Prior to entrepreneurism, Keith held various public service roles with the Ontario Government and Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre, focused primarily on supply chain management. As a resident of Barrie, he is an active community contributor, including a member of the Kempenfelt Rotary Club.
Karin C. Vogt, Stoney Creek (Lay Member)
Karin C. Vogt has enjoyed an extensive career in both the private and public sectors as well as wide-ranging experiences in community development and capacity building. Karin is currently employed at CURIE (Canadian Universities Reciprocal Insurance Exchange), where she provides direct support to the Chief Operating Officer and other senior staff. Previously, she was Executive Assistant to the President at Pearson Dunn Insurance Ltd. In her role as the Senior Campaign Manager for United Way of Burlington and Greater Hamilton, Karin formulated and directed the organization’s policy development, stewardship planning and implementation for Leadership and Major Gifts. The recognition of her contribution in these areas resulted in an appointment to Mohawk College, where she taught an extension program on Marketing, Fundraising and Public Relations in the Not for Profit Sector. Previously, Karin was Councillor Constituency Coordinator and Policy Advisor at the City of Hamilton. Karin’s professional accomplishments were equally matched by both her leadership and grassroots community contributions. For her contributions as President of the Hamilton Canadian Club, the Rotary Club of Ancaster, support of women across the broad sectors of the Hamilton community, as well as numerous fundraising chairs, Karin was nominated for the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce Athena Woman of the Year Award and the Ancaster Citizenship of the Year Award. Karin continues to be involved in a number of community undertakings within the broader Hamilton community.