2022 Agenda

February 17, 2022 | Online | 9:45 am – 4:45 pm ET

9:45 - 10:00 am

Registration & virtual orientation

10:00 - 10:05 am

Opening remarks from Neinstein

Rose Leto

Partner, Neinstein LLP

Sonia Leith

Partner, Neinstein LLP

10:05 - 10:35 am

Keynote address: Championing change

Join Lincoln Alexander School of Law’s inaugural dean, Donna Young, as she discusses how intentional adaption can transform anyone into an effective leader. Hear about her wins, the challenges she's faced as a Black woman in legal academia, and the important decisions and moments that have helped her to reach for success and grab hold of dreams she never thought possible. Let her powerful story inspire you and teach you how to initiate change around you, and what you can do to empower others to do the same.

Donna Young

Inaugural Dean, Lincoln Alexander School of Law

10:40 - 11:20 am

Designing the career you want

There are many factors to consider when building a successful career, such as the importance of identifying clear goals and understanding your strengths and weaknesses, and the benefits of learning how to network effectively. The leading lawyers on this panel will share key considerations for building a dream career – and questions to ask along the way.

  • Creating opportunities specific to your professional development plan: collaborating, defining clear goals, and beyond
  • How to build and nurture the right connections with industry leaders to advance your career
  • Strategies for adopting a proactive approach to professional development


Marwah Serag

Partner, Immigration Attorney, EY Law LLP


Susan Rosen

Partner, Gowling WLG

Taisha Lewis

Partner, Fasken

Parveen Sehra

Director, Professional Resources, Singleton Urquahart Reynolds Vogel LLP 

11:25 - 11:55 am

Overcoming gender bias in the legal profession

Gender bias remains a big issue in the legal industry, both in and out of the office. Overcoming gender bias requires being aware that it exists, shifting attitudes that reinforce it, and implementing systemic changes to address it. In this session, speakers discuss how to effectively tackle gender bias in the legal profession, sharing their own experiences and key insights.

  • How does gender bias manifest in the workplace and throughout the industry?
  • Effective strategies and policies that can be implemented to help overcome gender stereotypes at work
  • Practical tips for identifying gender bias within your own beliefs

Rose Leto

Partner, Neinstein LLP

Sonia Leith

Partner, Neinstein LLP

11:55 - 12:15 pm

Networking break

11:55 - 12:15 pm

Breakout Session: Everyone’s Resolution: Personal Finances under Control

Building a strong financial plan is critical for women in the legal profession. Being proactive, setting clear goals, and taking advantage of available financial programs are just some key strategies to optimize your financial position. This breakout session will unpack the uniqueness of legal professionals and guidance for successfully managing your financial future.

  • What key factors should women in law consider when creating a financial plan?
  • How is career planning and financial planning intertwined?
  • Strategies for building a financial plan that meets your personal and professional goals

Elke Rubach

President & Founder, Rubach Wealth

12:15 - 1:00 pm

Do More of What You Love: How to Balance a Business and a Law Practice

Law school can do an excellent job of preparing you to be a great lawyer, but it doesn’t always teach you how to be an effective business manager. Legal professionals often have to dedicate a large percentage of their day exclusively to administrative tasks, leaving them with fewer hours to do what they love: serving their clients. Join Dru Armstrong, CEO of LawPay, for a roundtable discussion on how to find the balance between running a successful business and being the best advocate you can be for your clients.


Dru Armstrong

CEO, Law Pay


Christine Holmes

CEO & Founder, Lawyersinhouse.com

Naomi Sayers

Lawyer, Naomi Sayers, Lawyer & Notary Publix

Lizon Chiasson-Foulem

Partner, Associée at McIntyre Finn

1:05 - 1:35 pm

Building a new business model

Often the challenges women in law encounter are categorized as issues that require accommodation. However, this perpetuates the idea that they are deficiencies that need to be worked around, making them women’s issues and not a business problem. This session will look at the importance of adopting a new business model that accurately reflects the current demographics of the legal profession.

  • Why is it important to implement gender equity policies and standards as part of a business model?
  • Navigating paternity leave and other important milestones
  • Alternative business models that foster an inclusive and diverse workplace at their core


Aaron Baer

Partner, Renno & Co


Stephanie Terrill

National Leader, Management Consulting, KPMG

Synthia Kloot

Chief Operating Officer, Clark Wilson LLP

1:40 - 2:20 pm

Fireside chat: Getting the most out of your mentor

A well-established mentor–mentee relationship can play an influential role in your career growth and have a positive effect on both your personal and professional development. However, it requires clear goals and dedication from both parties. This panel will feature two pairs of mentors and mentees who will share their successes and how they have worked to establish a growing, supportive mentorship.

  • Best practices for building an impactful mentor–mentee relationship
  • Practical skills that foster strong connections for personal and professional development: being intentional; journey-focused planning, and more
  • Understanding how to find the right mentorship match and what to look for


Tim Wilbur

Global Managing Editor, Canadian Lawyer


Jane Scholes

Associate, Lerners LLP

Sudevi Mukherjee-Gothi

Partner, Pallett Valo LLP 

Monty Dhaliwal

Lawyer, Pallett Valo LLP 

Yola Ventresca

Partner, Lerners LLP

2:20 - 2:40 pm

Networking break

2:40 - 3:20 pm

The woman’s journey: Celebrating stories of diversity

The legal profession can often pose additional challenges for women of diverse backgrounds. However, many of these women have overcome obstacles, leading to their success both in and out of the office. This session will feature a panel of female leaders who will share their unique experiences and insights into how they have navigated these different challenges and built successful careers

  • What are the challenges women of colour often experience in the legal industry?
  • The importance of celebrating achievements and providing allyship
  • Strategies for implementing EDI policies and procedures to increase diversity and inclusion in the profession


Kenyah Coombs

Conference Producer, Key Media


Ratika Gandhi

Head of Legal & Compliance, Canada, Alcon Canada Inc.

Richa Sandill

Staff Lawyer, Don Valley Community Legal Services

Julia Shin Doi

General Counsel, Secretary of the Board of Governors, and University Privacy Officer, Ryerson University 

3:25 - 3:55 pm

Innovation in the law: The future of tech

Technology continues to evolve and change the way we work, and the legal profession is no exception. With the increase in remote and digitized work, lawyers and firms are seeking efficiency, instead of long hours, as the key to success. In this session, tech-savvy leaders will share their insights on innovation in law and how to use tech to empower your legal practice and break down barriers to advancement.

  • What industry trends have emerged in the technological shift in the legal industry?
  • How can legal tech allow you to focus on added-valued services now more than ever?
  • Strategies for managing and capitalizing in the digital world


Marlon Hylton

CEO, Innov8


Lisa Danay-Wallace

Partner, WeirFoulds LLP

Len Polsky

Manager, Legal Technology and Mentorship, the Law Society of Alberta

4:00 - 4:40 pm

Standing out from the crowd

While your performance in your role is critical to your career, it's important to take it a step further. Being actively engaged, contributing to the team, and thinking innovatively are essential to differentiating yourself from other strong candidates. In this session, a panel of experts will provide practical tips for standing out from the crowd as a leader.

  • How to make a strong, lasting impression
  • Ideas for becoming more involved in your firm or organization
  • Utilizing everyday creativity to help you stand out as a leader


Dhawal Tank

Founder and Host, Build your Book


Aaron Bains

Partner, Aird & Berlis LLP

Selena Kim

Partner, Gowling WLG

Jennie Baek

Partner, McMillan LLP 

France Camille De Mers

Lawyer, Lavery Lawyers

4:40 - 4:45 pm

Closing remarks

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