The Superior Court of Justice in Ontario will see a new addition to its bench with the appointment of Associate Justice Gillian Eckler, set to take effect on Nov. 30, 2023.
This appointment, announced by the Ontario government, marks a significant step in bolstering the judicial expertise of the province’s legal system.
Associate Justice Eckler’s legal career spans over two decades, having been admitted to the Ontario bar in 1999. She spent 22 years at Dutton Brock, where she eventually became a partner. Her specialization in insurance defence litigation covered a broad spectrum of civil litigation matters, including products liability, contractual disputes, property loss, sexual abuse, personal injury, and class actions.
Her legal acumen has been demonstrated across various courts, including the Superior Court of Justice, the Ontario Court of Appeal, and the Federal Court of Canada. Notably, she served as counsel in two coroner’s inquests.
In 2021, Associate Justice Eckler expanded her professional scope by joining the Lawyers’ Professional Indemnity Company. Her work there encompassed a diverse range of legal areas such as construction liens, wills and estates, corporate commercial law, real estate, and family matters.
Beyond her legal practice, Associate Justice Eckler has been actively involved in community service and professional development. She has contributed to the Law Society Foundation’s Feed the Hungry program and co-chaired the articling committee at her firm for many years.
Her commitment to interdisciplinary learning is evident from her council membership at the Medico-Legal Society of Toronto, where she promoted the integration and understanding between medical and legal professions. Additionally, her contributions to the legal community include authoring and presenting numerous articles on various legal subjects.
Associate Justice Eckler’s educational background is as impressive as her professional career. She holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in History and French from Queen’s University (1994) and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law (1997). Adding to her qualifications is her fluency in both English and French.
Chief Justice Geoffrey B. Morawetz has made the decision to assign Associate Justice Eckler to Toronto, a move that underscores her capabilities and the confidence placed in her judicial abilities. This appointment is a testament to her extensive experience and commitment to the legal field, promising to enhance the judicial landscape of Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice.