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Chambers Canada Awards 2017

This year the Chambers Canada Guide Launch and Awards were held on Wednesday, September 27th at the Toronto Marriott City Centre Hotel.

The awards were based on the research for the 2018 edition of Chambers Canada: Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business. These awards reflect a law firm’s pre-eminence in key practice areas. They also reflect notable achievements over the past 12 months including outstanding work, impressive strategic growth and excellence in client service.

Click here for photo gallery of the event

For future sponsorship opportunities, please contact Jess Lindsay-Lonton at
[email protected].

Award Nominations and Winners:

Banking

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP
McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Stikeman Elliott LLP
Torys LLP

Winner: Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP
Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP continues to go from strength to strength across various banking-related categories including capital markets, financial services regulation and insurance. It offers notable strength in project, mining and infrastructure finance and wins praise for its focus on the mid market.

 

Competition

Bennett Jones LLP
Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP
McMillan LLP
Stikeman Elliott LLP

Winner: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP is home to some of the most highly regarded competition and antitrust lawyers in the country, many of whom offer significant experience working within federal enforcement agencies – including a former commissioner and deputy commissioner at the Competition Bureau. In addition to its prominent mergers practice, the firm has extensive experience of competition litigation and white collar defence.

Corporate

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP
McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP
Stikeman Elliott LLP

Winner: Stikeman Elliott LLP
Stikeman Elliott LLP operates a premium practice with a distinguished track record on both high-end and mid-market transactions. Important deals in which it was involved this year include the proposed merger of Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan and Agrium and the acquisition of Manitoba Telecom Services by BCE, to name just but a few.

Employment

Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP
Hicks Morley Hamilton Stewart Storie LLP
Koskie Minsky LLP
Norton Rose Fulbright

Winner: Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP has a dominant practice in labour and employment in Eastern Canada coupled with an up-and-coming reputation in BC and Alberta. It has a particularly strong reputation in Quebec and offers complementary expertise in pensions & benefits, immigration and human rights law.

Energy

Bennett Jones LLP
Dentons Canada LLP
McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Norton Rose Fulbright
Stikeman Elliott LLP

Winner: Dentons Canada LLP
Dentons Canada LLP stands out for its energy regulatory practice and can regularly be seen advising on the regulatory, commercial, environmental and Aboriginal aspects of major linear projects, many of which have significant implications for future resource development work in Canada.

IP

Bereskin & Parr LLP
Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP
Norton Rose Fulbright
Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh

Winner: Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh
This leading IP practice has offices across the country and is acclaimed for its prosecution and litigation expertise across diverse industry sectors, such as pharma, chemical and industrial biotechnology. It is the largest specialised firm of its kind in Canada.

Litigation

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Lenczner Slaght Royce Smith Griffin LLP
McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Norton Rose Fulbright
Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP
Torys LLP

Winner: Norton Rose Fulbright
Norton Rose Fulbright stands out for its transnational litigation practice in Canada and for its experience of multi-jurisdictional disputes. The department demonstrates significant capabilities in commercial and securities litigation, as well as offering key expertise in other areas such as Aboriginal law, IP and appellate advocacy.

Real Estate

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
Goodmans LLP
McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Stikeman Elliott LLP

Winner: McCarthy Tétrault LLP
This national firm wins widespread recognition for its sophisticated real estate practice with large clients in all of Canada’s major markets. The department was also involved in several large hospitality deals this year, including the acquisition by Bluesky Hotels and Resorts of InnVest REIT.

Regional Law Firm of the Year

Aird & Berlis LLP
Lavery, de Billy
Lawson Lundell LLP
MLT Aikins LLP
Torkin Manes LLP

Winner: Lavery, de Billy
Lavery, de Billy is one of the most well-established commercial firms in Quebec. With four offices spread throughout the province and a multi-talented bench of lawyers that includes a former premier of Quebec, it is a regular destination for referral work for firms and clients with operations in the province.


Outstanding Contribution to the Legal Profession: In-House

Melissa Kennedy, Sun Life Financial
Melissa Kennedy is the Executive Vice-President and Chief Legal Officer of Sun Life Financial. She is responsible for the company’s global legal, compliance, corporate secretarial and public affairs functions. Ms. Kennedy impresses many with her work relating to the inclusion of environmental social governance structures in corporate behaviour. Her extremely accomplished career trajectory has seen her work in private practice as well as in regulatory and in-house roles at financial institutions. Prior to joining Sun Life, Ms. Kennedy was the Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Corporate Affairs at Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, a position which saw her both oversee major transactions as well as influence the expansion of OTPP. According to sources who reflect on her period at Teachers, “she is inextricably linked to the maturity of that organisation.” She joined Sun Life in 2014, the year in which the company became the first major Canadian life insurer to sign on to the United Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment. In 2017, the organisation was recognised as one of Canada’s top employers for young people. Ms. Kennedy is also the former head of the prosecution team at the Ontario Securities Commission. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the Legal Leaders for Diversity and Inclusion and is described by the market as an “honest, deliberate, focused and successful GC” who is “philanthropic and community-minded.” Both private practice and other in-house lawyers agree: “What people identify about her is she is a mentor, she is a beacon, and a role model for others. She’s somebody who projects that she is able to succeed in the role at a very high level in a very large and demanding organisation and at the same time seems to be a well-balanced and well-adjusted person – she has not burned other bridges to get to this result.” “The arc of her professional career is in and of itself quite remarkable and shows great achievement.”

To view the 2016 Award winners click here