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Four judges appointed to Ontario Superior Court

Tuesday, October 02, 2018 @ 1:39 PM | By John Chunn


The Department of Justice on Oct. 1 announced the appointment of four judges for the province of Ontario.

Jessica Kimmel, a partner at Goodmans LLP, is appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto. She replaces Justice Robert Clark, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective June 18, 2018.

Justice Kimmel grew up in Vancouver and attended the University of Toronto, where she received a B.Sc. (with concentrations in neuropsychology and criminology) in 1986. She then attended Osgoode Hall Law School, receiving her LL.B. in 1989, and was called to the Ontario bar in 1991.

During her more than 30 years as a student, an associate and, since 1997, a partner with the Toronto law firm of Goodmans, her practice in civil litigation, arbitration and regulatory law has covered the spectrum of domestic and cross-border disputes. She is no stranger to the courtroom, having appeared in cases at all levels of court in Ontario, as well as the courts of other provinces, and at the Supreme Court of Canada.

Justice Kimmel’s commitment to serving the legal community has provided her with rewarding opportunities to contribute to important improvements to the administration of justice, such as through the Ontario civil case management practice direction. It has also allowed her to undertake broader community outreach through organizations like the Toronto Lawyers’ Association, of which she was president in 2009.

She has been a regular presenter and demonstrator at continuing legal education programs through The Advocates’ Society and the law society, as well as other legal organizations. She has written extensively, particularly about procedural matters (such as arise in class actions) and practical matters (such as electronic trials, privilege, and civility).

Annette Casullo, a partner at Will Davidson LLP, is appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Barrie. She replaces Justice G.M. Mulligan, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective Aug. 30, 2018.

Justice Casullo graduated from the University of Toronto (criminology, with distinction) in 1992 and Queen’s University Faculty of Law in 1996. She was called to the Ontario bar in 1998. Prior to her appointment, she was a partner in the Huntsville office of Will Davidson LLP, with a practice focused on insurance litigation. In 2011, she was designated a certified specialist in civil litigation by the Law Society of Upper Canada.

Justice Casullo was a member of the Ontario Bar Association Council from 2015 until her appointment, representing the Central East Region, and was most recently a member-at-large of its Insurance Law Section Executive. She was also first vice- president of the Muskoka Law Association and a member of the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association, The Advocates’ Society, the Simcoe County Law Association and the Orillia Law Association.

Sharon Shore, a partner at Epstein Cole LLP, is appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto. She replaces Justice Ian A. MacDonnell, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective July 30, 2018.

Justice Shore holds a B.A. in political science from York University and an LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School. She was called to the Ontario bar in 1998.

Prior to her appointment, Justice Shore practised exclusively in family law for more than 20 years. She articled at Epstein Cole, where she subsequently became an associate and then a partner. More recently, she also served as a dispute resolution officer in Toronto and Newmarket, and as family law duty counsel in the Court of Appeal.

Justice Shore has been actively involved with the Ontario Bar Association, where she was chair of the Family Law Executive, chair of the Access to Justice Committee, as well as a member of the Council for several years. She was also a member of the Steering Committee for the Unbundled Family Legal Services Project and has been a regular presenter at various continuing legal education programs.

R. Sonya Jain, a sole practitioner, is appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, and a member of the family court, in Barrie. She replaces Justice Ramona A. Wildman, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective Nov. 24, 2017.

Justice Jain received her B.A. in sociology (1996) from York University, and her LL.B. (1999) and LL.M. (2017) from Osgoode Hall Law School. She was called to the Ontario bar in 2001.

Prior to her appointment, Justice Jain was in private practice specializing in family law, mediation and children’s law. From 2003 until her appointment, she represented children in family law and child protection proceedings through the Office of the Children’s Lawyer. She also assisted low-income clients through the Legal Aid Duty Counsel Panel.

Justice Jain is passionate about helping people resolve their disputes. She has significant experience as a family mediator, as a dispute resolution officer in the Superior Court of Justice (family court), and as a member of the Consent and Capacity Board. Throughout her career, she has been an active member of the legal profession, having served in many leadership roles. Among them, she has chaired both the Family Law Committee of the Federation of Ontario Law Associations and the Simcoe County Family Law Lawyers Association, where she advocated on behalf of family lawyers in Ontario. She also worked closely with the law society, the Ministry of the Attorney General and other stakeholders to develop continuing education and access to justice programs.