News release: Ontario announces re-appointment of Ombudsman and Integrity Commissioner

TORONTO, December 1, 2020 - The Legislative Assembly of Ontario has reappointed both its Ombudsman and Integrity Commissioner for another five years.

Ombudsman Paul Dubé and Integrity Commissioner Hon. J. David Wake have served in their current roles since 2016. Their respective terms as Officers of the Assembly were extended by a unanimous vote of MPPs at Queen’s Park on November 30.

“Mr. Dubé has performed his role with the twin attributes of vigour and fairness. He is deeply committed to improving the delivery of government services to Ontarians, and this is evident in all of his investigations and reports,” said Speaker Ted Arnott.

“Justice Wake has been an outstanding Integrity Commissioner, who has provided excellent guidance and advice to Ontario’s legislators. We deeply appreciate his many years of service to the people of Ontario,” Speaker Arnott added.

The Ombudsman is an Officer of the Ontario Legislative Assembly who is independent of government and political parties. The Ombudsman’s Office promotes fairness, accountability and transparency in the public sector by resolving and investigating public complaints and systemic issues within the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction.

The Ombudsman’s Office also includes the French Language Services Commissioner.

The Integrity Commissioner is an Officer of the Ontario Legislative Assembly who is independent of government and political parties. The Office of the Integrity Commissioner of Ontario was established in 1988 to encourage high standards of ethical conduct for Members of Provincial Parliament. The Office has established itself as an independent ethics leader, working to encourage and support high ethical standards that strengthen trust and confidence in the Ontario government.

The Integrity Commissioner is also responsible for several other mandates, including lobbyist registration and to administer the disclosure of wrongdoing and conflict of interest regimes under the Public Service of Ontario Act.

Biographical notes follow.

Paul Dubé

Mr. Dubé began his legal career in private practice in New Brunswick. He specialized in criminal litigation and demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the protection of rights conferred by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the promotion of procedural fairness. He was actively involved in the New Brunswick legal community, serving as President of the Restigouche Barristers Association (1993-2004), and as ad-hoc member of the Council of the Law Society of New Brunswick (1993-1998). He also served on the New Brunswick Legal Aid Committee (1992-2004) and participated in the establishment of the New Brunswick Legal Aid Services Commission (2004). Mr. Dubé taught the French section of the New Brunswick Bar Admission course on Criminal Procedure from 1997 to 2005.

In 2008, Mr. Dubé was appointed federal Taxpayers’ Ombudsman and tasked with the creation of a new office to uphold the Taxpayer Bill of Rights and promote fairness in the Canada Revenue Agency’s treatment of, and service to, taxpayers. As an independent and impartial Taxpayers’ Ombudsman, Mr. Dubé oversaw the review of thousands of taxpayer complaints.

Honourable J. David Wake

Commissioner Wake was previously Associate Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice from 1999 to 2005, after which he returned to presiding duties in Brampton and then in Ottawa. In 2013, Commissioner Wake was appointed Vice-Chairperson of the new federal Social Security Tribunal for Employment Insurance, Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security appeals.

Commissioner Wake was called to the Bar of Ontario in 1974 and practiced law in Ottawa for 20 years, principally in litigation. He attended McGill University (B.A. 1969), Queen’s University (LL.B. 1972) and articled at Humphrey, Locke, Ecclestone & Kane. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1992. He was co- chair of the Ontario Conference of Judges’ Law Reform/Court Reform Committee. He was an instructor in criminal law for many years at the Bar Admission Course. Among his duties as Associate Chief Justice was the chairmanship of the Ontario Court of Justice Education Secretariat, which oversees and develops educational programs for all judges of the court. He was a member of the Ontario Judicial Council from 1999 to 2005 and executive director of the Canadian Council of Chief Judges from 2004 to 2009.

 

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