Colleagues and Friends,
I am running for Bencher to not only take the voice of sole or small firm practitioners to Convocation, but also of those who are facing barriers due to racial, gender, ethnicity or demographic factors. I believe I have the experience and ability to effectively contribute to address the challenges faced by all members.
While going through the process for internationally trained lawyers, I received another law degree in Canada in 1991 and have since practiced as a sole practitioner and then in a small firm for over 22 years in Ontario. Being a racialized licensee, I have endured and dealt with the challenges still faced by many of my colleagues today.
Challenges such as those faced by trailblazers like Delos Davis in 1880, Kew Dock Yip in 1945 and by Syed Mumtaz Ali in 1962 are to some extent currently pervading.
The consultation paper very recently prepared by LSUC on Addressing Challenges Faced by Racialized Licensees clearly acknowledges the issues and seeks suggestions to address them.
I recently attended a session organized to follow up on the consultation paper and realized that there needs to be experienced and effective representation from the racialized group amongst the Benchers to bring about real change.
The Law Society governs in the interest of the public. Having more resources and support available to sole practitioners and small firm lawyers allows for more competent and effective legal service being available to the public. We know from research that a large majority of racialized lawyers practice as sole practitioners or in small firms. They are also more at risk of complaints.
Internationally trained lawyers also face many challenges similar to racialized lawyers, including finding articling positions.
Addressing all of these issues effectively at Convocation is important not only for the Licensees, but also for the public. As you will see from my Personal and Professional Activities, I have extensive experience dealing with these issues as a practitioner and the skills and experience of being involved in governing roles to be an effective Bencher.
"I have known Harry Mann for more than twenty years. He has been a mentor and is one of the trail blazers amongst the South Asian Lawyers in Ontario. He is an excellent counsel and active community worker who understands governance well. He will make a good bencher. I whole heartedly support his election as a bencher."
Lay Bencher Mississauga
"I was very happy to learn that my friend & @westernuLaw alum, Harry Mann, is running for LSUC Bencher!"
"I am proud to personally endorse Harry Mann for the upcoming Bencher election in April 2015. He is a dedicated leader and has the ability to take on challenging tasks. I think he is an ideal candidate to be a bencher from Central West Region."
Parvinder Saund - Lawyer
President, Canadian Association of South Asian Lawyers
"Dear colleagues: It is my honour to endorse Harry Mann whom I have know since his days articling at Green and Spiegel for election as a Bencher
Not only should our Benchers be ‘bright’ and ‘warm’ and diligent, and a credit to our profession, as Harry is... but, more, I want Harry who not only practices law, but also runs a law office typical in size and scope to the reality in which so many of us practice, which perspective is needed! "
"Harry is thoughtful, principled lawyer who has made outstanding contributions to the community and to the legal profession. He is committed to advancing diversity, and is ideally suited to helping the Law Society advance these goals. I am pleased to endorse his candidacy for Bencher"
Christopher Bredt, two term bencher and Senior Litigation Partner at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
I hope you are all well.
I am writing to you all to ask you to support my friend and colleague Harry Mann as he runs for Bencher for Central West. I have known Harry for over 18 years, and am proud to see that he has decided to run as a Bencher for our region. In my years practising law in Peel, and having had a number of cases with Harry, I have found him to an admirable opponent who has represented his client with integrity and respect. But he has also treated me with candour and honesty despite differences in the case. Integrity and ethics are traits that never go out of style. Harry embodies those traits.
Harry has been very involved in the Peel Community and this is evident in his work with Peel Children’s Aid Society as its Chair. This an important role within our community and he discharges his responsibilities with the utmost enthusiasm and care. Further Harry has been very involved in the Sikh community as a prominent member.
Harry has contributed to the well-being of our community through his work as a lawyer, an advocate and a Canadian, and we are all the better for it. As a Bencher, I have no doubts that Harry would continue his tireless work.
I ask that you join me in support Harry."