2016 Zenith Award Winners
Marc-André Blanchard is an esteemed lawyer from Québec who in April became Canada’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations. In this role, Ambassador Blanchard works to advance Canada’s interests, promote international development, security and human rights, and to keep our government informed on multilateral issues. Prior to his appointment, Ambassador Blanchard had been the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of McCarthy Tétrault LLP, one of the country’s most prominent law firms. He also has a long history of political involvement, as the former president of the Québec Liberal Party and, more recently, as a member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s transition team. Ambassador Blanchard holds several degrees including a Master's in Public Administration and a Master’s in International Affairs from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs. He is a Lexpert Rising Stars alumnus, and in 2013 was named one of the 25 most influential lawyers in Canada by Canadian Lawyer.
The LFDIN is a group of Canadian law firms supporting diversity and inclusion in the legal
profession. Sixteen founding firms signed a statement of principles in May 2013. To promote
diversity and inclusion, members agreed to share ideas, work with other groups in the
legal profession, support outreach to law schools and communities and promote thought
leadership on diversity. There are now 33 member firms across Canada, including Canada’s
20 largest national law firms. Members share best practices, education and awareness efforts,
working with Legal Leaders for Diversity, the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion and
others. LFDIN meetings consider such issues as diversity surveys, LSUC’s report on racialized
licensees, unconscious bias in recruiting and retention, and accreditation of Trinity Western
University Law School.