Four Western Law alumni receive Law Society Medal

June 01, 2022

Law Society Medal Recipients

Christopher Bredt, Dean Erika Chamberlain, Albert Oosterhoff, Teresa Donnelly, Lorin MacDonald & Brian Gover

In a ceremony held at Osgoode Hall on May 25, four Western Law alumni were awarded the prestigious Law Society Medal for their outstanding contributions to the legal profession.

Established in 1985, the Law Society Medal is awarded “for outstanding service within the profession, whether in the area of practice, in the academic sphere, or in some other professional capacity where the service in accordance with the highest ideals of the legal profession.”

Christopher Bredt (LLB ‘79) was recognized for his skilled advocacy, his contributions to the Law Society and government, and his pro bono and charitable work. A passionate believer in the power of education, he has climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro four times to raise funds for the Canadian Organization for Development through Education (CODE) in support of women’s and children’s literacy in Africa. Bredt is also highly respected for his mentorship, collegiality, and integrity.

Brian Gover (LLB ‘81) has led a career spanning public service and private practice, and is regarded as one of Canada’s top advocates. He began his career at the Crown Law Office – Criminal and the Ministry of the Attorney General, and was the Executive Legal Officer of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice from 1991-1993. His practice now encompasses criminal law, regulatory law, Indigenous law, professional discipline, and public inquiries. Gover served as President of the Advocates’ Society in 2018-19, and is a Fellow of both the American College of Trial Lawyers and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers.

Lorin MacDonald (LLB ’09) is a human rights lawyer and champion of accessibility for those with disabilities. Born with profound hearing loss, MacDonald was instrumental in the development of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act (AODA). She also worked tirelessly to introduce captioning at (then) Ryerson and Western Universities, the Superior Courts of London and Hamilton, Mirvish Productions, and a wide range of professional organizations.

Albert Oosterhoff (LLB ’64) is Professor Emeritus at Western Law and the leading scholar of trusts and estates law in Canada. His books and articles have been highly influential in the academy and the judiciary, and he has been cited nearly 500 times by the Canadian courts. Professor Oosterhoff taught literally generations of students at Western Law, and is remembered fondly by those he taught. He was recognized for his lifetime of commitment to scholarly excellence and legal education.

Dean Erika Chamberlain expressed her pride and admiration for the Western Law medal recipients, who demonstrate the best of the profession. “It is inspiring to hear about the contributions of our alumni, and of all the award recipients, to the profession and to their communities,” she said. “The Law Society Awards is the kind of event that makes you extremely honored to be a lawyer.”

The awards were conferred by Law Society Treasurer, Teresa Donnelly. The full list of award winners is available here.