I am Vladimir Reznik and today I am announcing my candidacy for paralegal bencher of the Law Society of Ontario in the 2023 election.
Some of you may know me from 30 years ago when I first became an immigration paralegal, my very first career in Canada. Others may know me in other roles as I was involved in other business ventures including my career in real estate. Most recently I may have come on your radar as a paralegal who came full circle and returned to the profession through the same college and exam pathway as all of the new licensees.
And for those of you who don’t yet know me, in the coming weeks, I will be releasing a series of additional videos where I will continue to introduce myself and reflect with you on matters that are important for us in this election. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel and visit my website VoteVladimir.ca for updates.
But in this very first announcement video, I would like to start by reflecting on our colleagues who nominated me, and what their nomination means to me. After all, what better way to introduce a candidate than through the people who nominate him for this role?
And here is who they are
Leon Presner and Samantha Glass do not require an introduction. Leon is a law enforcement veteran of 27 years of a distinguished career, and a community leader, he is the founder of a growing multi-disciplinary paralegal firm in Durham. Samantha, is a litigator, a paralegal coach, and a frontline education worker with a passion for access to justice. She is an active mentor for many new paralegals, and she is the founder of the York Region Paralegal Network.
Being accountable to paralegals of that level of leadership is a responsibility and a privilege. Professionals like Leon who are in their second careers, who are close to their communities, small firm owners, they play an important role in advancing access to justice. Samantha’s perspective is a source of insight into education challenges, and frankly is a source of inspiration for my mission as a bencher to work on raising the competence of paralegals as a profession.
Jocy Zhu. A hardworking new Canadian with a law degree from China, Jocy is a professional whose perseverance and dedication to excellence allowed her to became not only a successful paralegal and a paralegal college instructor, but recently earned her a well-deserved position as a prosecutor at the City of Toronto.
Another first-generation Canadian, Daria Kotliar is a friend and a paralegal who rose to one of the senior management roles in the administration of Justice. She is balancing her role in policy development and court management with her responsibilities as a mother of four.
Licensees who are first-generation Canadians from all parts of the World have a very unique perspective on challenges that their communities face in matters of access to justice. As a first-generation Canadian myself, I feel that unfortunately this part of our society is not sufficiently represented at the Convocation. Their nomination of me, and the accountability that come with it, also keeps me aware of many additional facets of our diverse paralegal community that are often overlooked by the Law Society.
I am also honoured to stand nominated by Michelle Leong Francis. An inspiring educator, and a diversity and inclusion leader, Michelle is an advisor on the Law Society Coach and Advisor Network, as well as a tenured Peer on the Member Assistance Program. She has also appeared as a panelist on the Law Society Mental Health Summit.
Michelle is both a paralegal and a Realtor like myself. We have come to know each other in the Spring of 2020 when suddenly many struggled to understand the issues of racial inequalities. She helped me to create and deliver my own racial equality and diversity training for Realtors in my organization.
I am honoured and humbled to stand nominated by these outstanding leaders in our profession, five brilliant paralegals who come from different backgrounds, and who have each expressed their trust in me that I would be the right candidate to represent the diversity of their voices at the Convocation. It is their trust, the mandate, and our shared values for access to justice for the people of Ontario that I have promised to represent and uphold when elected a bencher.
Now, even though there will be more videos and articles to follow, this announcement would not be complete if I did not say at least a few words about my platform.
I decided to stand for this role as I stand for recognizing and removing inequities and barriers to providing legal services that paralegals currently face through all levels of regulation, starting from access to competence and professional development, fiscal inequities imposed on paralegals and perpetuated by this regulator, inequities related to tribunal justice and discipline process, and everyone’s favourite, removing the unjustified limitations on the scope of our practice, and enhancing access to justice by expanding it.
I believe that only by removing those inequities and barriers to providing legal services that a strong and competent paralegal profession can best contribute to improving access to justice. And that is how I view my service to the people of Ontario as a future bencher on the Convocation, a director on the governing board of this regulator.
As I release additional videos on each one of these topics, I will continue to discuss each one of them in more detail. So please subscribe to my YouTube Channel, and also please subscribe at this website below, so you can start getting updates as I continue to release my platform materials.
That said, I am Vladimir Reznik, and I am now running for paralegal bencher of the Law Society of Ontario in the 2023 election.
Now, on behalf of our friends and colleagues who nominated me, I am asking for your vote. I am asking you to give me the mandate to bring your voice to the Convocation. With your help, I aspire to raise the standards of efficient and responsible governance of our profession, and to hold this regulator to the highest standard of its duty to facilitate access to justice for the people of Ontario through strengthening the paralegal profession.
For more information on the Law Society of Ontario Bencher Election 2023, please be sure to visit 2023 Bencher Election Tab in your LSO Portal.
I trust I can count on your vote!
Bye for now.