OBA Names New Innovator in Residence

  • November 08, 2022

Mante Molepo to Launch and Lead Career Accelerator Program

Mante Molepo has been named the 2022-23 Ontario Bar Association Innovator in Residence and will lead the association’s new career accelerator for Indigenous and racialized lawyers in emerging areas of law. 

Each year, an Innovator in Residence is appointed to work with the OBA’s Past President to identify, develop and advance solutions that will help lawyers better serve their clients and the profession, all while improving access to justice. Previous innovators have been Peter Aprile of Counter Tax Lawyers, Ryerson’s Legal Innovation Zone, and last year’s innovator – Friedrich Blase. Through programs like this initiative, the OBA has become a trusted source for advancing innovation in the legal profession.  

The OBA’s career accelerator program builds upon this foundation. It is designed to give early- and mid-career Indigenous and racialized lawyers the skills and training they need to advance their participation in four emerging areas of law: artificial intelligence, ESG, fintech and privacy. Over a span of eight weeks – beginning in the summer of 2023 – accelerators will participate in substantive professional development in the four areas.  

“Many lawyers who are Black, racialized or Indigenous face systemic barriers within the profession, so this program will help them gain insight, develop skills and competencies, and learn strategies through a series of coaching, mentorship and sponsorship opportunities,” said Molepo, the founder and CEO of Mante Molepo Consulting, a company that works with leaders and boards to advance anti-racism, equality and inclusion in the non-profit, academic and corporate sectors. “What is unique about this initiative is that participants will learn about and have access to professional opportunities that exist within the four areas of practice across private practice, government and non-governmental sectors.” 

Participants in the career accelerator program will partner, engage and network with, and learn from, leaders and practitioners in these areas, including Indigenous and racialized leaders who will share their lived and professional experience. 

“Equality, diversity and inclusion is at the heart of the work we do every day at the OBA. This program is the perfect addition to that work, and Mante is the perfect person to lead it,” said OBA Past President Charlene Theodore who developed this concept and is Chair of this year’s OBA innovation team. 

Please visit the Innovator in Residence website to learn more about the program. 


Established in 1907, the OBA is the largest voluntary legal association in Ontario representing over 16,000 lawyers, judges, law professors and law students. The OBA provides continuing professional development and advocates for improvements to the law in the interests of the profession and public. 


The OBA annually appoints and supports an Innovator to serve an annual term in which they will focus on a designated innovation theme of importance to practicing lawyers.  

The Innovator-in-Residence Program leads and supports the Ontario bar to, and through, innovative change with the information, education, practical advice and tools that lawyers need to succeed in a rapidly changing market. 

While “in residence” the Innovator’s role will be to identify, develop and advance innovations that will help lawyers better serve their clients. Throughout the term, the OBA will deliver practical, cutting-edge tools, services and supports to lawyers and law firms. 
As an annually funded initiative, the Innovator in Residence will consistently offer the profession the fresh perspectives, knowledge, skills, and connections necessary to drive change and keep pace with the speed of innovation.  


Mante Molepo’s work focuses on cultivating a culture of belonging for Indigenous and equity-deserving groups using a unique organizational model of change. She serves on the Board of Governors at the Ottawa Hospital and is also an elected member of the Ontario Bar Association Council. She is a founding member and former co-Chair of Parents for Diversity, an organization committed to addressing equitable and inclusive education. Molepo is also a former director for Amnesty International Canada, EcoEquitable, and the Parkdale Food Centre, where she led issues around diversity, equity and inclusion. In 2020, she was recognized as a Community Builder by the United Way, and, in 2018, was recognized as one of Canada’s 100 Accomplished Black Women. 

– 30 –  

For more information: 

Michael Speers  
Media & Communications Specialist