On October 3, 2022, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice held its annual opening of the courts. The justices reminded us of all they have done to drag the courts into the 21st century, and laid out our path towards a post-pandemic future. As always, the event is a time of reflection and renewal, of celebration and anticipation. But it is also a deeply anachronistic institution, reminding us of a time when courts simply closed for three months of the year out of tradition. Today, the idea of closing courts for a quarter of the year sounds insane, but commemorating that we did so with a speech about radical change is perfectly normal.
This newsletter explores that duality, as we remain in that liminal space between a post-pandemic future and the lingering past. We start with interviews with four leaders of legal organizations in the second year of the pandemic: Karen Perron, President of the Ontario Bar Association; Deborah Palter, President of The Advocates’ Society; Teresa Donnelly, Treasurer of the Law Society of Ontario; and Jennifer Gold, President of the Women’s Law Association of Ontario. We ask them about the projects they pursued during their terms, how the profession has changed, and the changes they are hoping are still to come.
This newsletter also represents a new start for the new civil litigation executive. To that end, our Chair and Vice Chair, Rachel Migicovsky and Moya Graham, introduce us to our themes for the upcoming year. Last, there is an article by Stuart Rudner on the mediation in the post-pandemic world.