MLA Awards

The MLA recognizes its members with four awards: Distinguished Service, Access to Justice, Rising Star, Philanthropy

2023 MLA Awards

(*Please note that the nomination period has now closed but please check your emails from the MLA for a link to voting for this year’s exceptional nominees!)


We appreciate our members engaging in this process of reflection and recognition of their exceptional colleagues. Your time given to both nominating and voting for the 2023 Middlesex Law Association Awards allows the talent of our members to be celebrated.

Award for Philanthropy, which recognizes exceptional contributions and/or dedication by MLA members to the community by supporting not-for-profit organizations and/or performing charitable services.

Award for Access to Justice, which recognizes individuals who have demonstrated a commitment to providing commendable legal services to those in need through Legal Aid Ontario or through pro bono legal services and/or offered academic contributions pertaining to the study of legal aid and/or created innovative measures or built links between lawyers and community organizations/advocates to promote better access to justice in Middlesex County.

Rising Star Award, which recognizes individuals who have distinguished themselves in the practice of law, who advances the ideals of the profession, demonstrating community involvement, and have been practicing for less than 10 years.

MLA Award for Distinguished Service, which recognizes exceptional career contributions and/or achievements by MLA members to the legal profession and/or a law-related benefit to the community including mentorship related to the profession of law and/or leadership roles in the community. Those who will receive the award will have made a significant contribution to the profession of law, whether as a solicitor in effectively performing services in that position, as a barrister in attaining an excellent reputation in the courts, as an academic, or for a single act of notable distinction and/or innovation in the practice of law that advances the ideals of the profession.

Award recipients will be selected based on a combination of voting by the MLA membership and the Awards Committee’s review of the nomination forms.

The Awards will be presented during the Fall Opening of the Courts Ceremony on Tuesday, September 19, 2023. 

2023 Awards Committee


Leslie Ibouily was called to the bar in 2021, and is a staff lawyer with the Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Project (SHIW Project) at the Elgin-Oxford Legal Clinic (EOLC) & Huron Perth Community Legal Clinic (HPLC).


Vicki Edgar was called to the bar in 1990, and has been a partner at Cohen Highley since 1998. She practices in insurance and personal injury law, litigating at the Ontario Court of Appeal and Supreme Court of Canada.

Jennifer Foster was called to the bar in 2012, and is a sole practitioner in family law. Her practice focuses on providing limited scope services, including legal coaching, to clients and virtual associate services to family lawyers. Jennifer is also a Certified Legal Coach, supporting clients who are self-represented with the tools and strategies they need to navigate their family law matter with confidence while they retain full control over the process and their costs.

Hilary Jenkins was called to the bar in 2016. Since her call to the bar, she has practiced family law in London, Ontario. Hilary assists clients with family law and child protection matters in Court and through alternative dispute resolution. Hilary is an active member of the London legal community. She serves as a Board Member for the Middlesex Law Association and as the Vice President of the Middlesex Family Law Association.

Qasim Kareemi was called to the bar in 2020, and is an associate Hassan Law practicing family law and civil litigation. He also serves as a Director on the Atlohsa Family Healing Services’ Board of Directors.

Michael Lamb was called to the bar in 1986 and after many years as a sole practitioner, has recently joined Cohen Highley with an emphasis on real estate law, wills and estates. He has appeared before the Ontario Court of Appeal and teaches as an adjunct professor of real estate law at Western University.

Stephanie Marentette was called to the bar in 2015, and is a litigation lawyer with McCague Borlack LLP. She also serves as a Director of the St. Joseph’s Healthcare Board of Directors and the Vice Chair of the London Transit Commission. Stephanie’s practice focuses on privacy, construction, estate and property law as well as insurance property damage claims and subrogated losses.

Jennifer Wall was called to the bar in 2013, and is a partner and current Practice Group Leader with the family law department at Harrison Pensa. She is a Board Trustee of the Middlesex Law Association.