Marion Overholt, B.A.(Hons.)LL.B., Barrister-at-law
Marion has practiced law in Windsor and Essex County for 38 years. She was a staff lawyer at Legal Assistance of Windsor for many years and has represented clients in public law benefits practice while training law students in the practice of poverty law. She is considered an expert in public benefits law and is often called upon to speak and write about this area of law. Over of the years she has been a board member of numerous community agencies and social justice initiatives including the Downtown Mission, Unemployed Help Centre, Windsor Coalition against Poverty, the Wellcome Centre, the Windsor Social Justice Coalition and Project Ploughshares. She is a past chair of the Provincial Community Legal Clinics Steering Committee on Social Assistance. She has served on a number of United Church committees at both the national and local levels, including a ten year term on United Church Judicial Committee. For ten years Marion was the Social Justice Representative on the Windsor and District Labour Council Executive Board. This is the first time that a labour council anywhere in Canada has had a non-union representative sit on its’ executive. She recently chaired the Ford/CAW local 200 Worker’s Adjustment Committee.
Marion was the recipient of the Law Society of Upper Canada Bicentennial Award of Merit, the 29th Charles E. Brooks Labour Community Service Award, the 2007 recipient of the Elementary Teacher’s Federation of Ontario award for Women Working in Social Activism, Canada 125 Commemorative Medal and Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.
Lilian Bahgat, BSc. JD, Barrister-at-law
Lilian is Review Counsel and has been with CLA since 2015. Prior to joining CLA Lilian worked in private practice primarily on Civil, Employment, Estate and Elder Abuse Litigation. Lilian’s practice always revolved around advocating for the vulnerable members of the community. She holds a certificate in Elder Law from Osgoode Law School. Lilian also conducted research on the topics of battered wife syndrome, patient rights and elder abuse. Lilian is also a regular course instructor at the Elder College and taught as a sessional instructor at St. Clair College for their law clerk program. She currently serves on the Association for Canadian Clinical Legal Education as a board member.
Helen Karpouzos, M.A., LL.B., J.D., Barrister-at-law
Helen Karpouzos is Review Counsel for CLA’s criminal practice area. Helen is a Windsor Law graduate who became passionate about access to justice while working at CLA for all three years during law school. After graduating, Helen practiced as an assistant crown attorney and later as a federal prosecutor, until she started her own criminal defence practice. With a Master of Arts degree in psychology, Helen is particularly interested in social justice issues faced by individuals living with mental health illnesses and/or addictions. Helen currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Essex Law Association and ConnexOntario.
Harpreet Burmy, B.Sc., L.L.B and J.D., Barrister-at-law
Harpreet Burmy is Review Counsel at CLA since 2014. She developed and ran the Family Law Practice Program at CLA from 2014 to 2020. Harpreet is a Windsor Law grad who during law school volunteered at CLA as a caseworker, litigator and group leader. After earning her joint Canadian and US law degrees, Harpreet went on to work in private practice primarily on Family Law, Civil and Estate Litigation. Harpreet has always been passionate about working with Windsor’s vulnerable and marginalized individuals and families in conflict. Harpreet continues to be interested in alternative dispute resolution methods, especially for family law related matters. She also serves on the CLA Advisory Board.
OUR CLA TEAM
Jeff Adey, Windsor Law/Detroit Mercy Law, 2L
I am in my second year in the Dual JD program at Windsor Law and Detroit Mercy Law. I’ve completed a Bachelor and Master’s degree in criminology at the University of Windsor. I am interested in pursuing a career in litigation, class action, and/or white collar defence & compliance. Before beginning as a summer student, I volunteered as a caseworker with Community Legal Aid (“CLA”) during 1L. I have cherished working at CLA since it has allowed me to give back to my community and gain substantive legal experience. For any student passionate about learning and advocacy, I recommend joining CLA at one point throughout your law school experience!
Julianna Galifi, Windsor Law, 3L
I am going into my 3L year at Windsor Law and have a great interest in family law. I’ve had the privilege of exploring this interest as CLA’s family law student this past summer. Prior to this summer, I volunteered as a caseworker during the Winter semester of my 1L year. Working with CLA has been an equally challenging and rewarding experience that I cannot recommend enough! Not only are you given the opportunity to develop critical legal skills but the chance to support your community as a student.
Alex Galiyash, Windsor Law, 2L
I am entering my second year in the JD Program at Windsor Law with an interest in pension law (exciting, I know!). I first volunteered as a Caseworker at CLA during the Winter semester of my 1L year and I was fortunate enough to be hired on as a summer student. It has been an extremely rewarding and stimulating experience and I could not recommend it enough for students who want to get involved and truly have an impact in the community.
Sarafina Guthrie, Windsor Law, 2L
I am a 2L at Windsor Law. I began at CLA in my Winter Semester of 1L where I gained an interest in litigation and was thankfully hired on as a 2021 Summer Student. I am interested in Employment & Labour Law, and International Business Law (one day soon I'll narrow myself down). CLA has truly taught me about advocacy, poverty law and courtroom decorum. I look forward to continuing with CLA in my second year of law school and working in the community of Windsor, even if only remotely.
Sasha Kassam, Windsor Law, 2L
I am a 2L student at Windsor Law. I had the opportunity to volunteer with Community Legal Aid (“CLA”) as a caseworker during the Winter semester of 1L and obtained a summer student position in May 2021. As a summer student at CLA, I was able to gain exposure to several court processes where I was given the ability to enhance my oral advocacy skills. I learned a lot in terms of successfully drafting legal documentation and devising legal strategies. I highly recommend joining CLA if you are passionate about the law and are looking for a rewarding experience.
Aziza Khalifa, Windsor Law, 2L
I am a 2L student at Windsor Law. I started at CLA as a volunteer caseworker during my 1L semester and had the privilege to work there in the summer after. CLA has been the most rewarding experience so far during my law school journey and I would recommend it to anyone else
Kristeen Rodregus, Windsor Law, 2L
I am a 2L student at Windsor Law. I previously completed my undergraduate degree in English Language and Literature at the University of Windsor. I started with Community Legal Aid (“CLA”) as a caseworker in the winter of 1L, and then went on to become a 2021 Summer Student. CLA is the place to be if you are interested in making meaningful contributions to the community while sharpening up your legal skills. Getting to work with CLA has been the highlight of my law school experience thus far and all this is owed to the support and trust CLA invests every semester to deliver an unfettered and client-focused experience for students.
Julian Shephard, Windsor Law, 3L
I am a 3L Windsor Law student from Aurora, Ontario with a passion for criminal law. I have had the opportunity to volunteer with CLA since my first year of law school. Working with CLA has allowed me to explore and solidify my interest in criminal law and oral advocacy as well as apply what I have learned in the classroom to real issues. I look forward to continuing my work at the clinic as a group leader this year and sharing my experiences and insight with incoming students.
Angie Tracey, Windsor Law, 3L
I am a 3L at Windsor Law with an interest in entertainment law (but I’m keeping my options open). Before becoming a group leader, I volunteered at CLA as a caseworker for two semesters. CLA has been one of the most interesting and rewarding aspects of my law school experience - I highly recommend volunteering for at least one semester!
Mitchell Witteveen, Windsor Law, 3L
I am a 3L at Windsor Law who volunteered with CLA for four (4) semesters before summering in 2021. I did my undergraduate and master's degree at the University of Windsor and appreciate CLA as a great opportunity to give back to the community.
Arjun Sekhon (Windsor Law, 2021)
I am a recent Windsor Law graduate who volunteered with the Community Legal Aid clinic for multiple academic terms. I started as a “caseworker” and then moved up to the role of “senior caseworker”. My experience in law school and background in Justice Studies are areas I aspire to use in order to be a resilient advocate for clients. Community & Justice Involvement are areas that I am passionate about, and places that I strive to make a difference in throughout my articles with CLA and in the future."
Will Raymond (Windsor Law 2021)
I recently graduated from Windsor Law and I am now Articling at Community Legal Aid. I had the opportunity to work as a caseworker and summer student at CLA in 1L, and followed that up as a group leader throughout my second year.
I can honestly say that my experiences at the clinic were some of my best in law school. I met some of my best friends to this day while working CLA, and the opportunities I've had to work on real cases, go to court and meet with clients have been invaluable to my development as a lawyer. I would highly recommend CLA to anybody looking to enhance their knowledge, skills and overall law school experience
Jonquil Belanger, Administrative Assistant, Bookkeeper and Commissioner of Oaths at CLA
Jonquil is the administrative assistant, law clerk, bookkeeper and Commissioner of Oaths at CLA. Jonquil became a Certified Law Clerk in 2000 and currently holds an Associate Membership with the Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario since 2005. She began her career in law at Clarks Barrister & Solicitors in 2000 as a Corporate Law Clerk specializing in not-for-profit corporations and eventually moving into personal injury, Accident Benefits and civil litigation law with lawyer, Stephen E. Yoker. Jonquil enjoys her role on the team at CLA and looks forward to continuing to serve the community of Windsor-Essex County through her work at CLA.
Emily Drouillard, Receptionist/ Law Clerk
Emily is our Receptionist / Law Clerk at CLA. She graduated from the Paralegal program at St. Clair College in the Spring of 2020. Emily became passionate about working in law and serving her community through her volunteer work with other legal professionals. She really enjoys her role with CLA and looks forward to working with the people of her community.