Julia Shin Doi, general counsel, secretary of the board of governors, and university privacy officer of Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) has been appointed as a Judge of the Superior Court of Justice of Ontario in Toronto, according to an announcement made by David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, on Monday.
Justice Shin Doi will replace Justice M.A. Code (Toronto), who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective September 1, 2022.
The appointment was made under the judicial application process established in 2016, which emphasizes transparency, merit, and the diversity of the Canadian population, ensuring the appointment of jurists who meet the highest standards of excellence and integrity.
Justice Shin Doi is an accomplished lawyer who has held various positions in the legal field. She immigrated to Canada from South Korea and was raised in Toronto as part of the Korean Canadian community. After graduating from high school as valedictorian, she attained a B.A. with distinction from the University of Toronto and a J.D. and LL.M. from Osgoode Hall Law School.
Before her appointment, she worked as a counsel for York University and then became General Counsel and Secretary of the Board of Governors of Toronto Metropolitan University. She was a bencher of the Law Society of Ontario and an adjudicator of the Law Society Tribunal. Additionally, she has taught legal drafting, advanced corporate/commercial law, and contract law at several law schools in Canada and co-authored a book on drafting commercial agreements.
Justice Shin Doi was also actively involved in founding various legal associations, including the Korean Canadian Lawyers Association, Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers, Roundtable of Diversity Associations, Women General Counsel Canada, and Korean Legal Clinic.
The appointment of Justice Shin Doi is part of the government’s commitment to promoting diversity in judicial appointments. At the Superior Court level, more than 605 judges have been appointed since November 2015. Of these judges, more than half are women, and appointments reflect an increased representation of visible minorities, Indigenous, 2SLGBTQI+, and those who self-identify as having a disability.
The government is also committed to increasing the capacity of superior courts to improve access to justice for all Canadians. Budget 2022 provides for 22 new judicial positions, along with two associate judges at the Tax Court of Canada. Since Budget 2017, the government has funded 116 new judicial positions.
Changes to the Questionnaire for Federal Judicial Appointments were announced in September 2022. The questionnaire provides for a robust and thorough assessment of candidates but has been streamlined and updated to incorporate more respectful and inclusive language for individuals to self-identify diversity characteristics.
The appointment of federal judges is made by the Governor General, acting on the advice of the federal Cabinet and recommendations from the Minister of Justice. The Judicial Advisory Committees across Canada play a key role in evaluating judicial applications. There are 17 Judicial Advisory Committees, with each province and territory represented.
Significant reforms to the role and structure of the Judicial Advisory Committees, aimed at enhancing the independence and transparency of the process, were announced on October 20, 2016.
The Government of Canada is committed to promoting a justice system in which sexual assault matters are decided fairly, without the influence of myths and stereotypes, and in which survivors are treated with dignity and compassion. Changes to the Judges Act and Criminal Code that came into force on May 6, 2021, mean that in order to be eligible for appointment to a provincial superior court, candidates must agree to participate in continuing education on matters related to sexual assault law and social context, which includes systemic racism and systemic discrimination. The new legislation enhances the transparency of decisions by amending the Criminal Code to require that judges provide written reasons, or enter them into the record