Executive & Committees

We are governed by our Board of Trustees and an Executive Committee led by the President. In addition to the Bench & Bar Committee, the Board also has six distinct Practice Area Committees (PACs) that reflect the diverse practice areas and experiences of our membership.

Executive Committee


Nicola Circelli

Nicola is the founder of Nicola Circelli Law, focusing on the areas of criminal defence, mental health and estates. She has appeared at all levels of court within the province and has successfully defended clients at trial. Nicola is passionate about her client’s cause and works hard to seek the best resolution possible for them.

Along with her current role as President of the Middlesex Law Association, Nicola is Vice-President of the Criminal Lawyer’s Association of London, a member of the Provincial Criminal Lawyer’s Association, the Law and Mental Disorder Association, the Women in Canadian Criminal Defence and regularly volunteers in the London community. Having previously completed a Masters in International Human Rights Law, Nicola represented her University in the International Criminal Law Trial Competition in The Hague and was a member of the University of Leicester Women’s Soccer team.


Jacqueline Fortner

Jacqueline is an Associate at Dyer Brown LLP, practicing in Insurance Law. She was called to the Ontario bar in 2016 after obtaining her Juris Doctor from Western University in 2015. Jacqueline has been a Trustee of the Middlesex Law Association since 2018 and also serves on the Board of Directors for the not-for-profit, Investing in Children. Jacqueline enjoys spending time with her children, searching for the best coffee in the city, and testing out new cookie recipes.

Past President

Jake Aitcheson

Jake is a Partner in the Plaintiff Personal Injury Group at Lerners LLP. His practice is devoted entirely to helping advance the rights of those injured and disabled across Ontario. He was called to the Ontario bar in 2014, after obtaining his Juris Doctor from Western University in 2013. Jake has been a Trustee of the Middlesex Law Association since 2015. In addition to his role as the Vice President of the Middlesex Law Association, he is a Director for the Brain Injury Association of London and Region, and a member of Spinal Cord Injury Ontario’s Southwestern Professional Executive Committee. Jake is a television junkie and an avid sports fan, with a passion for baseball and F1 racing.


Bench & Bar

Rasha El-Tawil, John A. Nicholson, Hilary Jenkins, Leslie Ibouily

Practice Area Committees

Practice Area Committees of the Board comprise: Corporate/Commercial; EDI/Professionalism; Personal Injury; Real Estate; Small Firms/Sole Practitioners/In-house; and Wills, Estates, and Trusts. The MLA is closely linked with the Middlesex Criminal Lawyers Association (MCLA) and the Middlesex Family Lawyers Association (MFLA) and sometimes partner on events in support of our members, many of whom belong to these two groups in addition to the MLA. All MLA Practice Area Committees are led by a Trustee and are comprised of both Trustee and MLA members.

Be a Leader in Your Practice Area

We continue to actively recruit members to contribute their expertise and voice to the newly-formed subcommittees above. This opportunity will raise your profile within the community, earn you a reputation as a leader in your practice area, and connect you with other lawyers in your field.


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