Osgoode honours 12 graduating students

Osgoode Hall Law School Dean Lorne Sossin presented 12 graduating students with Dean’s Gold Key Awards for outstanding contribution to the life of the law school at the Dean’s Third-Year Luncheon on March 30.

 Back row, from left, Daniel Del Gobbo, Brent Kettles, Robert "Hunter" Graves, Osgoode Hall Law School Dean Lorne Sossin, Melayna Williams, Darren Hall, Hamza Dawood and Lauren Cowl. Front row, from left, Cynthia Hill, Jeffrey Carolin, Marlene Costa, Dorothy Charach and Jennifer Quito.
Above: Back row, from left, Daniel Del Gobbo, Brent Kettles, Robert “Hunter” Graves, Osgoode Hall Law School Dean Lorne Sossin, Melayna Williams, Darren Hall, Hamza Dawood and Lauren Cowl. Front row, from left, Cynthia Hill, Jeffrey Carolin, Marlene Costa, Dorothy Charach and Jennifer Quito. 

In congratulating this year’s award recipients, Sossin said he “was simply in awe of the multiple initiatives these students have undertaken and the leadership, commitment and enthusiasm they have demonstrated.” Here are brief biographies of the award winners:

Jeffrey CarolinJeffrey Carolin

Throughout his three years at Osgoode, Carolin has made a remarkable contribution to life at the law school. His leadership, commitment and enthusiasm for Osgoode have been obvious during his two-year tenure as a State & Citizen Dean’s Fellow and in his capacity as Orientation Week leader in his second year.

In the summer following his first year at Osgoode, Carolin  participated in the Ian Scott Public Interest Internship Program and used this opportunity to work with the Pivot Legal Society in Vancouver’s downtown east side. During the winter semester of his second year, Carolin participated in the Intensive Program in Poverty Law at Parkdale Community Legal Services, working in the Immigration & Refugee Law Division.

In addition, Carolin has been a tireless key founding member of the Osgoode Hall Law Union and was instrumental and indispensable in helping to coordinate the first Social Justice Social during Orientation Week 2009 and its successor in 2010.

Dorothy CharachDorothy Charach

Charach has played a very active role in both the serious and less serious sides of Osgoode. She has been an active contributor to the mooting program at Osgoode, having represented Osgoode in five different moots and negotiation competitions since first year. Throughout her time at Osgoode, Charach has also been highly involved in Community Legal Aid Services Program (CLASP), including serving as its Criminal Division leader in her second year.

Charach has shown her school spirit through her cheerful participation in Mock Trial in all three years. This past year, she was one of the three producers of Mock Trial. Charach has also left an indelible mark at the Obiter Dicta, having served as the publication’s business manager and co-editor-in-chief.

Finally, Charach has been an active member of several Osgoode sports teams and leagues, including intramural volleyball (where she was chosen as MVP in 2009), softball and touch football.

Marlene CostaMarlene Costa

During her time at Osgoode, Costa has made an outstanding contribution to the law school. Costa is a three-year veteran of Student Caucus, most recently serving as chair. During her tenure, she distinguished herself through a variety of initiatives and earned the confidence of her peers. Costa has also been involved in Osgoode community life through her involvement with the Orientation Committee, the Dean’s Fellow Program, Mock Trial and the Student Ambassador Program.

Costa has represented Osgoode in two different international mooting competitions and served as a senior caseworker in the Osgoode Business Clinic. In the summer following her first year at Osgoode, Costa participated in the International Legal Partnership, working at the United Nations Development Programme in Serbia.

Lauren CowlLauren Cowl

Cowl’s many contributions to Osgoode over the past three years have been truly exceptional. She has been intensively involved in the work of the Osgoode Hall Law Journal during each of her years as an Osgoode student. As this year’s managing editor of the journal, Cowl has met the demands with commitment, skill and good humour, all while demonstrating outstanding leadership.

In addition to her dedication to the journal, Cowl has found time to contribute to the academic mission at Osgoode in other ways, including serving as CLASP duty counsel and participating as a mooter in the Lerner’s Cup Moot. During her last two years at Osgoode, Cowl has also shown her commitment to equality by serving as a volunteer for LEAF at Work.

Hamza DawoodHamza Dawood

Dawood has demonstrated outstanding commitment and enthusiasm to the law school during his extended time at Osgoode as a JD-MBA candidate.

He is a founding member of two Osgoode clubs (the South Asian Law Students’ Association and the Muslim Law Students’ Association) and has organized countless events for the student population. Dawood served as an editor for the Osgoode Hall Law Journal for three years. He has also acted as the head coach for the Third Annual Osgoode Black & Blue Charity Tip-off against the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law.

Daniel Del GobboDaniel Del Gobbo

As the current vice-chair of Student Caucus, Del Gobbo has a stellar record of student involvement and rapport among Osgoode students. He has made a conscious effort to serve the Osgoode community through his extracurricular activities. He sits on and contributes to numerous committees at Osgoode, including the demanding Faculty Recruitment Committee and the Equality Committee.

In addition to his extensive participation in student government, Del Gobbo has served as an Osgoode Chambers Residence Fellow and a first-year Torts Dean’s Fellow, mentoring other students.

Del Gobbo has also served the law school by writing legal commentary for, and acting as managing editor of, the blog TheCourt.ca.

Robert “Hunter” GravesRobert “Hunter” Graves

Graves has shown exceptional commitment, enthusiasm and leadership both in and outside of the law school. Throughout his three years at Osgoode, he  played a central role at CLASP, first as duty counsel and caseworker, then as division leader in the Criminal Division, and finally as vice-chair of the Board of Directors.

Graves has also been very active in athletics at Osgoode, first as captain, then assistant captain and coach-manager of the Osgoode “A” hockey team. He played a major role in team selection, administration and motivation of players. Graves played in the Osgoode Touch Football League for three years and was a member of the winning student team in the “Student vs. Staff” Osgoode baseball game.

Darren HallDarren Hall

Hall exemplifies the key attributes of leadership, enthusiasm and commitment. He played an instrumental role in the development of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) at Osgoode. Hall was a pioneer in the first year of the Mediation Intensive Program, concentrating his time on building relationships with the Jane-Finch community and implementing mediation skills to design and develop the Osgoode Mediation Centre. He has continued his involvement as a student member of the advisory board for the mediation program. In 2009-2010, Hall led the Osgoode Mediation Advocacy team to victory in Canada and a third-place finish in Paris.

In addition to his extensive involvement in the ADR program, Hall is president of the Osgoode Mature Students Association and has been active in the Osgoode Intellectual Property Club as vice-president, external (2009-2010) and as vice-president, advisory (2010-2011).

Cynthia HillCynthia Hill

Hill has made an enthusiastic and ongoing contribution to Osgoode. She is currently a third-year representative on Student Caucus and has served on a number of different committees, including the Information Technology Committee and the Standing Committee on Teaching & Learning.

Additionally, Hill was business manager of this year’s Mock Trial, working behind the scenes to ensure its success. In both her second and third years, she served as a Dean’s Fellow for Torts and as Orientation Week leader and committee member. Hill has also been a peer counsellor and a student ambassador and worked at Osgoode’s Business Clinic as first a junior caseworker, and then a senior caseworker.

Finally, Hill brought her love of running to Osgoode, serving as “Team Osgoode” captain in the Sporting Life 10-kilometre run.

Brent KettlesBrent Kettles

Kettles has made enormous contributions to the Osgoode community throughout his three years at the law school. His achievements in debating and mooting are many. He won acclaim at countless prestigious international debate competitions, including ranking ninth overall (and being the top-ranked Canadian debater) at the recent World University Debate Championships, which were held in Botswana. Kettles has also achieved high rankings in a number of moots, including the 2010 Gale Cup, the 2009 Fasken Martineau International Law Moot and the 2008 Lerner’s Cup.

Kettles has served as president of the Osgoode Debate Society as well as coach of a number of mooting teams, which has cast him sharing his knowledge and experience with the next generation of Osgoode debaters and mooters.

In addition to his accomplishments in debating and mooting, Kettles has been a member of Student Caucus, an Osgoode representative on York Senate, and a Dean’s Fellow in two courses.

Jennifer QuitoJennifer Quito

Over the past three years, Quito has shown tremendous enthusiasm and dedication to Osgoode and her fellow students. Since her first year, she has played a leadership role in the development of the International Legal Partnership (ILP) and was chosen for an ILP fellowship in the summer of 2009.

Quito was a recipient of the Ian Scott Public Interest Fellowship, interned with a non-governmental organization in India and volunteered at various legal aid clinics including CLASP. In her second year, Quito completed the Intensive Program in Poverty Law at Parkdale Community Legal Services, working in the Social Assistance, Violence & Health Division where she drafted a disability accessibility policy for the clinic and worked on several community events.

As a third-year, Quito mooted in front of a Supreme Court justice and won an individual oralist award, as well as the best pair award with her partner. She was also a member of the Osgoode Hall Mooting Society and acted as a judge for the Lerner’s Moot.

Melayna WilliamsMelayna Williams

Williams’ commitment to the Osgoode community is perhaps best shown by her involvement as an executive member of the Black Law Students’ Association (BLSA). Williams brought the BLSA into a new era by energetically recruiting new members, implementing an inclusive atmosphere and mobilizing the BLSA’s ranks to get involved and give back to the community.

Williams has also served as coordinator of Pro Bono Students Canada, helping students interested in specific areas of law gain an opportunity to have hands-on experience working in that area of law. Finally, she has been a regular contributor to the Obiter Dicta, competed in the Baby Gale Moot and helping the Women’s Caucus with a discussion panel on sexual and gender-based violence. She also assisted the International Legal Partnership with their events for International Women’s Day.