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Ottawa names new judge to Tax Court

Tuesday, December 11, 2018 @ 12:56 PM | By John Chunn

Justice Canada announced on Dec. 11 that Gabrielle St-Hilaire, an associate professor at the University of Ottawa, has been appointed as a judge of the Tax Court of Canada. She replaces Justice Réal Favreau, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective Feb. 26, 2018.

Justice St-Hilaire received a B.Ed. in 1980 and a B.A. in 1986, both from the University of Manitoba. Between 1980 and 1987, she taught mathematics and chemistry in Manitoba high schools. In 1987, she left Winnipeg to study at the University of Ottawa, where she earned an LL.B. and an M.B.A. After completing her law studies, Justice St-Hilaire clerked for judges of the Tax Court of Canada.

In 1991, Justice St-Hilaire began her career as a professor and later as vice-dean of the French Common Law Program at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law. She taught tax law and corporate law there for more than 26 years and received awards for her excellence in teaching. From 2001 to 2003, Justice St-Hilaire took a leave of absence from the university to work as legal counsel with the Tax Litigation Section of the Department of Justice Canada. For over a decade, she was also a part-time member of the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board and the Health Services Appeal and Review Board, two Ontario-based administrative tribunals.

Concerned by access to justice issues, Justice St-Hilaire co-supervised students assisting self-represented taxpayers in appeals brought before the Tax Court of Canada, under the auspices of a Pro Bono Students Canada project. She also volunteered and supervised students completing tax and benefit returns for low-income taxpayers through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program. Justice St-Hilaire also served as treasurer of the board of directors of the Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, trustee of the Research and Education Charitable Trust of the National Association of Women and the Law, and member of the board of directors of the Association of French Speaking Jurists of Ontario.