Vincent Del Buono (BA Comb. Hons. ’72), a visiting scholar at York and an ongoing Senior Fellow of the Glendon School of Public & International Affairs, died on Tuesday, April 13. He was 60.
“Those who knew Vince Del Buono will be deeply saddened by the news of his sudden death,” said Glendon Principal Kenneth McRoberts in his message to the Glendon community. “As well as being a distinguished public servant, both in Canada and internationally, Vince was a most loyal Glendon alum. Among his many contributions, he played an instrumental role in establishing the School of Public & International Affairs.”
Mr. Del Buono was born in 1949 in Casacalenda, Italy, and immigrated to Canada at the age of four, although he retained close ties to his ancestral home and remained proud of his Italian heritage. Raised in the Toronto neighbourhood of St. Clair and the Junction, Mr. Del Buono, educated at York and the University of Toronto, was called to the bar in Alberta and went on to a distinguished international career in the fields of criminal law reform, justice, security and human rights.
Right: Vincent Del Buono
Mr. Del Buono had spent a decade as senior counsel with the Law Reform Commission of Canada and the Department of Justice, and was founding president of both the International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law and the International Centre for Criminal Law Reform & Criminal Justice Policy in Vancouver. During the 1990s, he played senior roles at the United Nations Office on Drugs & Crime in Vienna and with the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He also served as deputy secretary general of Amnesty International in London.
From 2002 to 2007, Mr. Del Buono led the British Council’s Access to Justice program in Nigeria, work for which he was honoured by investiture into the Order of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He was also proud of his traditional Nigerian titles: The King’s Law Maker and The Emir’s Chief Mediator. He had recently returned to Canada after many years abroad and having settled into a home in Niagara-on-the-Lake was active as CEO of the Niagara 1812 Bicentennial Legacy Council.
Over the years, Mr. Del Buono held academic appointments at McGill University, the Universities of Ottawa and British Columbia, Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles, and the State University of New York at Buffalo. He retained particularly close ties with York and with Massey College at the University of Toronto.
Mr. Del Buono’s family will receive friends at Morley Bedford Funeral Services, 159 Eglinton Ave. W., Toronto, today from 4 to 8pm. A funeral liturgy will be held at the Newman Centre, St. Thomas Aquinas Roman Catholic Church, 50 Hoskin Ave. in Toronto on Saturday, April 17, at 10:30am. A memorial service will be held in St. Catharines at the Unitarian Congregation of Niagara, 223 Church St., on May 2 at 2pm. Memorial donations can be made to Amnesty International or the Terry Fox Foundation.