International News

Canadian lawyer receives prestigious 2014 leadership award

Besi Besemar August 16, 2014

Cynthia Petersen is the recipient of the Egale Canada Human Rights Trust 2014 LGBT Leadership Award.

Cynthia Petersen
Cynthia Petersen

The award is presented annually to a Canadian whose leadership has advanced lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) human rights both at home and abroad.

Cynthia was called to the Ontario Bar in 1994, having earned a Bachelor of Laws degree from Queen’s University and a Master’s degree from Harvard Law School. Since then, she has regularly appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada on behalf of interveners and clients in a variety of public interest cases.

Cynthia has litigated most of the seminal Charter cases that have influenced the development of gay and lesbian rights in Canada.

These cases include Egan v. Canada, Vriend v. Alberta, M. v. H., Little Sisters Bookstore v. Canada (No.1 and No.2), Chamberlain v. Surrey District School Board, Reference re: Same-Sex Marriage, Hislop v. Canada and Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission v. Whatcott.

She has fought tirelessly for the rights and dignity of LGBT people. The effects of her significant accomplishments in the courtroom have reverberated across this country, from marriage laws to workplace discrimination to freedom of expression.

For this leadership, and over two decades of service to the community, Egale has chosen to recognise her as the 2014 LGBT Leadership Award recipient.

Egale GalaCynthia Petersen will accept the award on Friday, September 12, 2014 at Egale’s 6th Annual Gala at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Toronto. All proceeds from the event will support Egale’s goal of combating homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and all other forms of discrimination so that every person can achieve their full potential, unencumbered by hatred and bias.


Event:  Egale’s 6th Annual Gala

Where: Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Toronto

Date: September 12, 2014

Time: Reception, 6.30 p.m., Dinner, 7.30 p.m.

Tickets: 350 Canadian dollars

To purchase online, CLICK HERE: