Business Law Modernization and Burden Reduction Council Members
The Business Law Modernization and Burden Reduction Council is a short-term advisory body comprising eight members that have provided recommendations to the government on business law matters since February 2019.
E. Patrick Shea - Chair
Partner, Gowling WLG
E. Patrick Shea, MStJ, LSM was Vice-Chair of the previous Business Law Advisory Council during its three-year mandate, which ended in 2018. Mr. Shea is a partner in Gowling WLG's Toronto office, practising in the area of commercial law with a focus on bankruptcy and insolvency. He has represented a variety of clients regarding large and small M&A, corporate restructuring and insolvency matters in the entertainment, retail, automotive, airline, and food and beverage sectors. Mr. Shea is a past chair of the Ontario Bar Association's Bankruptcy and Insolvency Section, and the Canadian Bar Association's National Bankruptcy and Insolvency Section. He is currently Co-Chair of the American Bankruptcy Institute's ("IBA") International Committee and a member of the Steering Committee for the IBA's Top 40 Under 40 Initiative. He is also a director of several not-for-profits. He was a director and Chair of the Governance Committee for St John Ambulance and is a past chair of the St John Canada Foundation. Patrick serves as an external consultant/advisor to various Governments in the Caribbean Region with respect to the reform of their insolvency legislation and the adoption of financial institution resolution regimes.
Jennifer Babe - Vice Chair
Associate Counsel, Miller Thomson LLP
Jennifer Babe is associate counsel at Miller Thomson LLP and practises in the areas of corporate and commercial law, focusing on secured transactions, the securing of sales and leases of significant products and the purchases of businesses, assets and shares. She also has special expertise in personal property law. Ms. Babe is a Fellow of the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers, past chair of the Canadian Bar Association's ("CBA") Business Section, and past Chair of the Commercial Law Strategy Committee of the Uniform Law Conference of Canada. She was a member of the Ministry's Business Law Agenda Stakeholder Panel, as well as the Business Law Advisory Council and chaired its Commercial Law Working Group. Jennifer received the Law Society Medal in 2016.
Partner, Miller Thomson LLP and Managing Partner of the Markham and Vaughan offices
Andy Chan is a partner at Miller Thomson LLP, and Managing Partner of their Markham and Vaughan offices. Mr. Chan's areas of focus include business law, related corporate and regulatory matters, financial services and strategic business immigration in a variety of sectors, including manufacturing, real estate development, technology, healthcare, insurance and natural resources. His specialized global cross-border practice includes providing counsel to international and domestic clients on corporate law, mergers and acquisitions, investments, structurings and financings. Mr. Chan is co-chair of Miller Thomson's International Business Transactions Group, and national chair of the firm's Asia Practice. He is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, named Leading Canadian Corporate Lawyer Watch by Lexpert and a past winner of its Rising Star Award. Mr. Chan was a member of the Ministry's Business Law Advisory Council and served on its Entity Law Working Group.
Justice John Ground, Q.C.
Senior Counsel, Hansell LLP
John Ground, Q.C. is currently senior counsel at Hansell LLP. He is a retired arbitrator and mediator with Amicus Chambers and focused on commercial and corporate matters. Justice Ground was appointed to the Ontario Superior Court in 1991 where he spent half his time presiding over cases on the commercial list. He moved to the Bench after more than 30 years with Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP where he practised corporate and commercial law. Justice Ground was a Bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada from 1975 to 1991. He previously served as a member of the Ontario Law Reform Commission Advisory Board from 1989 to 1994. He contributed a judicial perspective to the Business Law Advisory Council's work.
Partner, Dale & Lessmann LLP
Clark Harrop is a partner with Dale & Lessmann LLP's corporate and commercial group, focusing on franchise and business law. Prior to this, he was Senior Legal Counsel for McDonald's Restaurants of Canada Limited. Mr. Harrop was also Senior Corporate Counsel and Director of International Support for The TDL Group Corp. (Tim Hortons). Mr. Harrop's past community involvement includes serving as Director of the Canadian Franchise Association and as Corporate Secretary of the Tim Horton Children's Foundation. His academic achievements include a Bachelor of Arts degree from York University and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Osgoode Hall Law School.
Partner, Dentons LLP
Andrea Johnson is a partner at Dentons LLP, and her practice focuses on corporate and securities law with an emphasis on technology and emerging growth companies. Ms. Johnson has extensive experience in the private equity and venture capital area and has acted as lead counsel on many of the largest venture capital financings in Canada. Ms. Johnson was recognized by The Legal 500 Canada in the area of Corporate and Mergers & Acquisitions in 2015, and by Best Lawyers® in Canada 2015 as one of Canada's leading lawyers in the areas of Corporate Law, Securities Law and Technology Law. She previously served on the Ministry's Business Law Advisory Council and its Entity Law Working Group.
Director, CI Financial
Sheila Murray is the former President of CI Financial Corp., a position she held from 2016-2019. She was previously Executive Vice-President, General Counsel and Secretary since 2008, following a 25-year career at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, where she practised securities law with an emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and corporate reorganizations. Ms. Murray played a key role in directing the operations and setting corporate strategy for CI Financial Corp. and its operating companies, including CI Investments Inc. and Assante Wealth Management. Her role included leading CI's mentoring program, which fosters the advancement of high-potential female employees. Ms. Murray is Chair of the Dean's Council at Queen's University Law School. She has taught Securities Regulation at Queen's University this past year and Corporate Finance at the University of Toronto's Global Professional LLM in Business Law Program for several years. Ms. Murray is Chair of the Board of Teck Resources Limited and a director of CI Financial Corp., a trustee of Granite REIT and has been a director of a number of other private and public companies. Ms. Murray received her B.Comm. and LLB degrees from Queen's University.
Partner, Gardiner Roberts LLP
Arlene O'Neill is a partner at Gardiner Roberts LLP and a Member of the firm's Executive Committee. She also recently received the ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors. A seasoned lawyer with expertise in corporate and commercial law, Ms. O'Neill specializes in technology-based companies and assets including software and other technology-based assets and businesses. Within commercial law, her practice focuses primarily on mergers and acquisitions, equity and debt investments (including cross-border structuring and investment) and corporate governance matters. Ms. O'Neill is a past chair of the OBA's Business Law Section Executive and the Chair of its Corporate Law Subcommittee. She was a member of the Business Law Advisory Council.