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Venceremos! - A Celebration of Latin American Heritage Month

October 27, 2021
7:00 PM EDT - 8:00 PM EDT
Ndija Anderson;

In celebration of Latin American Heritage Month, we brought together Latinx legal professionals to share personal stories, experiences, and strategies for taking on opportunities and challenges throughout their careers.

This event also served to formally launch the inaugural LALSA Venceremos Award in support of an incoming Lincoln Alexander Law student who self-identifies as Latinx, who has excelled as a leader in the community, academics, and/or extracurriculars, and who demonstrates financial need. To make a donation to this award, click here.

Together, we honoured the accomplishments of Latin American legal professionals and shed light on the underrepresentation of the Latin American community in the legal sector.

Date: Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Time: 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. ET

Format: Online

Moderator: Veronica Marson - Partner & Co-Founder at Wynford Legal


  • Roberto Aburto - Partner, Gowling WLG
  • Hon. Justice Joseph W. Bovard - Ontario Court of Justice
  • Alexander Gay - General Counsel, Dept of Justice
  • Ana Rico, Legal Counsel, Legal Services, Immigration and Refugee Board
  • Marisa Victor - Vice-Chair, Landlord & Tenant Board, Tribunals Ontario

Hosted in collaboration with the Lincoln Alexander School of Law's Latin American Law Students' Association (LALSA). If you have any questions about this event, please contact Ndija at

Law Society of Ontario Accredited EDI

This program contains 1 hour of EDI Professionalism Content.

Veronica Marson

Veronica Marson is an Argentine-Canadian family and personal injury lawyer. She is a past president of the Canadian Hispanic Bar Association as well as a past commissioner on the American Bar Association's Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights and Responsibilities. She has an honours degree in international development from the University of Toronto and a law degree from Queen's University in Kingston. In addition to her experience in law, she has worked in various non-profit community development projects throughout the Americas.

Roberto Aburto

Roberto Aburto is a Partner at Gowling WLG, where practises municipal law, administrative law, and civil litigation, with a focus on development disputes, including real property disputes, construction law, land use planning law, expropriation, municipal tax assessment, and commercial litigation. He also specializes in administrative law and sports law. Roberto is a member of Gowling WLG's national Municipal Law Group, as well as the national Expropriation Law Group.

Roberto is a proud member of the Canadian Hispanic Bar Association, where he serves as a mentor. He is a member of Lambda Alpha International Land Economics Society, the Ontario Bar Association, Greater Ottawa Homebuilders' Association, and the Canadian Property Tax Association.

He is also co-chair of Gowling WLG's Canadian Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Council, and is committed to promoting the principles of diversity and inclusion. Roberto serves as host of Diversonomics, a podcast on diversity in the legal market. In October 2020, Roberto was distinguished as an Excellence Award recipient for the "Pro Bono Gender Markers Initiative" at the Canadian Law Awards.

Joseph Bovard

Justice Joseph W. Bovard has been a judge of the Ontario Court of Justice for 30 years. He sits in Toronto, Ontario. He sits primarily in criminal court but has also sat in family court.

Justice Bovard has a keen interest in legal education and training. He has done this work in Canada, Peru, Chile, Mexico, and Tanzania.
In Canada, he has worked extensively with Indigenous persons and the justice system. He is a founding member of the Toronto Gladue Persons Court. He is also a founding member of the Toronto Domestic Violence Court.

Justice Bovard gets his Latin American and Indigenous heritage from his mother, Ana Julia Alvarez, who was Mayan from El Salvador. When he was a child he lived in El Salvador. He speaks English, Spanish and French.

Alexander Gay

Alexander Moreno Gay is General Counsel at the Department of Justice. He maintains a broad civil litigation practice, with an emphasis on commercial and trade disputes. Mr Gay has appeared before all levels of court in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia as well as the Supreme Court of Canada. Mr Gay is an adjunct professor at the University of Ottawa (Faculty of Law), where he teaches civil litigation and commercial arbitration. He is the author of the Annotated Ontario Arbitration Legislation - Arbitration Act, 1991 and International Commercial Arbitration Act, 2017, British Columbia's International Arbitration Legislation: Commentary and Annotation and numerous chapters and articles on a wide range of topics. Mr Gay is a member of the Law Society of Alberta, the Law Society of British Columbia, the Law Society of Ontario, The Advocates' Society and the Canadian Hispanic Bar Association (CHBA). He is fluent in English, French and Spanish.

Ana Rico

Ana Rico is a refugee from El Salvador, arriving in Canada when she was four years old with her parents and siblings. She was the first of my family to complete a post-secondary education in Canada. She graduated from York University, where she obtained a Specialized Honours in Environmental Studies. She completed her law degree from the University of Ottawa in June 2012. She was called to the bar in June 2013. 

She worked for Legal Aid Ontario as a staff lawyer in practicing in the area of family law, with a focus on child protection until she joined the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada as an RPD member in February 2017. She adjudicated claims for refugee protection from February 2017 until April 2021. Then she transferred to the legal department in April 2021, where she now advises RPD members and the organization on relevant matters pertaining to immigration and refugee law. 

She is an avid traveler and reader. One of the top items in her bucket list is to travel throughout all of Latin America by land as she is a big fan of the Che Guevara diaries. She's routinely travelled from Toronto, Ontario, Canada to San Salvador, El Salvador by land on family road trips and enjoyed immersing herself in the diverse sights, smells, tastes, and experiences that are unique to Central America.

Marisa Victor

Marisa Victor is an Ontario lawyer based in Ottawa. Currently, at Tribunals Ontario, Marissa serves as the Managing Vice-Chair of the Animal Care Review Board and the Fire Safety Commission as well as a Vice-Chair of the Landlord and Tenant Board and a Member of the Licence Appeal Tribunal.

Prior to joining Tribunals Ontario, Marisa practiced civil litigation and administrative law and appeared at every level of court. She has extensive experience in civil litigation, public law, administrative law, constitutional law and human rights law. Marisa practiced law through her own firm, a boutique litigation firm, and at a large international law firm. She was also Legal Counsel to Commissioner John Major at the Inquiry into the Bombing of Air India Flight 182. In addition, in 2017, Marisa was nominated by the Law Society of Ontario and appointed to a two-year volunteer position with the Federal Judicial Advisory Committee (Ontario East & North) charged with making recommendations for judicial appointments to the Minister of Justice.

Marisa articled at the National Judicial Institute (NJI), an organization tasked with providing legal education to the judiciary. She is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School (2006) where she also completed a joint Master in Environmental Studies (MES) with a focus on integrating law, public policy and public participation.

Marisa regularly works in both English and French and identifies as Latinx.