Ombudsman André Marin to be honoured with Canadian Bar Association award for public service
TORONTO (August 10, 2012) – Ontario Ombudsman André Marin will be presented Monday with the Canadian Bar Association (CBA)’s top award for a public sector lawyer, the John Tait Award of Excellence.
The national award, to be presented at the CBA’s annual conference in Vancouver on Aug. 13, recognizes Mr. Marin’s “unwavering commitment to public service, his advocacy skills and legal acumen distinguish him as an outstanding legal professional,” says CBA President Trinda L. Ernst. “He has used his talents to effect real and sustained improvements in the lives of average citizens. He exemplifies the type of exceptional service and contribution which the John Tait Award was created to recognize.”
Mr. Marin has used his legal and advocacy skills as Ombudsman to bring justice to some of the most vulnerable members of society, in cases where more traditional legal avenues have been unsuccessful, the CBA said in a press release.
Mike Winstanley, Chair of the CBA Public Sector Lawyers Forum, said the award recognizes Mr. Marin’s “tireless dedication to the community and your significant contribution to social justice in Ontario,” as well as his strong volunteer commitment, including lecturing law students and training fellow ombudsmen and investigators across the country and around the world. “It is abundantly clear you play a key role in the community on many different levels,” he wrote in a congratulatory letter to Mr. Marin.
Established in 1998 to celebrate the accomplishments of Canadian public sector lawyers, the award is named in honour of John Tait, a public servant and lawyer who died in 1999.
The honour for Mr. Marin comes just four months after he received the Ontario Bar Association (OBA)’s Distinguished Service Award for his exceptional career contributions to the legal profession and achievement of significant law-related benefits for the residents of Ontario. He also received the OBA’s Tom Marshall Award of Excellence for his outstanding contribution to the practice of public sector law in Ontario in 2009.
As Ontario’s Ombudsman since 2005, Mr. Marin’s recommendations for systemic reforms have benefited millions of Ontarians, from newborn babies to property taxpayers to lottery players. His office oversees more than 500 Ontario government organizations and handles more than 18,000 complaints per year.
Mr. Marin served as Canada’s first military ombudsman for more than six years, and as director of Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit from 1996 to 1998. Prior to 1996, he was an assistant Crown attorney in Ottawa.
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