Western University (LL.B.)
University of Toronto (B.A. Hons.)
I was born and raised in west-end Toronto. I am the progeny of immigrants and the product of an unbridled need to do better by the next generation. You could say that that I am wired for striving and hard work, which made law a very appropriate destination for me.
I have a very distinct memory of having a long talk with one of my best friends after being accepted to law school about why I wanted to go. My explanation was very much an idealistic perspective of the role lawyers play in our world. I recall my friend telling me “You know, you don’t have to save the world”. I certainly was wearing my rose-coloured glasses that day.
What I could not know then, but what I have learned through 10 years of practice, is that one of the best ways a lawyer can “save” someone is by making a client’s journey through the litigation process as effective and efficient as possible. A client is best served by using my knowledge of the law and experience in civil litigation to “cut to the quick” of the issue and find a practical resolution. Trials may be my favourite place, but they may not be the best place for my client. The mantras of my practice are: “you don’t get if you don’t ask” and “the outcome of a matter is limited only by our own creativity”.
There is a distinction, in my mind, between “clients” and “customers”. Customers are consumers who are only ever seen once as they chase the latest trend. Clients are the individuals with whom there is a lasting relationship built on mutual trust and respect. My clients are equals in the process. We work together to manage the litigation process, and the costs associated with it, by blending both legal and business analysis to ensure that the client’s goals are being met.
One of the other benefits of coming from a long line of strivers is learning the value of a dollar. I know how hard people work to build a career and life for their families because I watched my parents do it, and I’m now doing the same thing. One of my goals, then, is to ensure value for the client’s dollar.
I have spent my entire career with “small” firms or as a sole practitioner. I have stayed in this realm because firms like Baker & Company offer clients the resources of a large firm, but the agility and the client connection of a solo operation.
My area of expertise is civil litigation and I provide litigation support to the firm’s clients when the need arises. My favourite area of practice has always been employment law. I have acted for both employers and employees to draft human resources policies, negotiate contracts, address disciplinary issues, and to deal with terminations.
I have also practised family law throughout my career. Family and employment law may, at first blush appear to be an odd mix. However, they encompass the two most important parts of an individual’s life: their family relationship and their ability to provide for that family.
I can also assist with wills and estate planning, as well as residential real estate. These areas tend to be my “happy place” away from the conflict of litigation. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing a young couple buy their first home or a young entrepreneur succeed in a new business.