The Honourable Rosalie Silberman Abella - Keynote Speaker at Annual Meeting on Law and Society Toronto 2018

Keynote address will be held on Thursday (June 7th,2018) at 1 pm.

Rosalie Silberman Abella, FRSC (born July 1, 1946) is a Canadian jurist. She was appointed in 2004 to the Supreme Court of Canada, becoming the first Jewish woman to sit on the Canadian Supreme Court bench.

Abella is the recipient of 37 honorary degrees, and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. She was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002. She was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007. In May 2016, she was awarded an honorary degree from Yale University, becoming the first Canadian woman to earn such an honour.She has been a judge of the Giller Prize, and is a graduate of the Royal Conservatory of Music in classical piano.

She has written over 90 articles and written or co-edited four books. She was made a Senior Fellow of Massey College in 1989, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1997, and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007. She has given, among others, the Harlan Lecture at Princeton, the Ryan Lecture at Georgetown, the Winchester Lecture at Oxford, the Anderson Lecture at Yale, and was the Bullock Chair at the Hebrew University, the Mackenzie King Distinguished Visiting Professor at Harvard, the Floersheimer Distinguished Jurist in Residence at Cardozo, Distinguished Visiting Faculty at the University of Toronto Law School, and Bright International Jurist in Residence at the University of Hawaii School of Law.

Justice Abella was awarded the Distinguished Alumnus Award of the University of Toronto Faculty of Law; the Distinguished Service Award of the Canadian Bar Association (Ontario); the International Justice Prize of the Peter Gruber Foundation; the Human Relations Award of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews; the Honourable Walter S. Tarnopolsky Human Rights Award; and the Bora Laskin Award for Distinguished Service in Labour Law; the Global Jurist of the Year in 2016 from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law; the 2017 Ethical Leadership Award from the Faculty of Management at Dalhousie University; and the 2018 Calgary Peace Prize, from Mount Royal University. She has 37 honourary degrees.

Justice Abella was born in a Displaced Person's Camp in Stuttgart, Germany on July 1, 1946 to parents who survived the Holocaust. Her family came to Canada as refugees in 1950.

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toronto Credit: Philippe Landreville, photographer Supreme Court of Canada Collection