Pursuing the Polar Star: Statutory Interpretation Post-Vavilov

 Registration is closed for this event


Pursuing the Polar Star: Statutory Interpretation Post-Vavilov

Tuesday December 13, 2022, 12:00pm-1:30pm

$25.00 plus HST

Virtual presentation using ZOOM meetings technology


As the Supreme Court of Canada emphasized in Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v. Vavilov, 2019 SCC 65, administrative justice will not always look like judicial justice.  That includes statutory interpretation.  Still, while administrative decision-makers are not required to engage in a formalistic exercise to resolve the interpretative issues that arise before them, their decisions must nevertheless be consistent with the Court’s view of the correct approach.  What is that approach?  Join us on December 13 at 12-1:30 pm to hear Sara Blake, author of Administrative Law in Canada, explain the proper post-Vavilov methodology for interpreting statutes, followed by a discussion moderated by Mark Mancini. 

SPEAKER: SARA BLAKE, Administrative Law lawyer and Author

Followed by Q and A with: 

MARK MANCINI, Administrative Law lawyer, Author, PhD student


Sara Blake is author of the leading text, Administrative Law in Canada, now in its seventh edition. Sara is frequently invited to speak on the subject of Administrative Law.

Sara is now in private practice restricted to clients who exercise statutory and regulatory powers. Her services include legal advice on questions of procedural fairness, evidence, and statutory interpretation, including quick advice on issues that arise during a hearing. She represents statutory decision makers and regulators on judicial review and appeal, and intervenes in appeals on their behalf, using her extensive experience at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada before whom she has argued many cases.

Sara retired from the Ontario Government after 35 years practicing a wide variety of litigation. This included 24 years with the Attorney General (the last 7 years as General Counsel), and 11 years with the Ontario Securities Commission. She represented government clients in tribunal hearings, civil trials, prosecutions of regulatory offences, judicial reviews, and appeals to the Ontario Court of Appeal and Supreme Court of Canada.

In 2009 Sara was awarded the SOAR Medal by the Society of Ontario Adjudicators and Regulators to recognize her outstanding contribution to the administrative justice system. In 2020 she received the Carol Creighton Award for Contribution to Public Law awarded by the Association of Law Officers of the Crown to recognize her exemplary contribution to public service and the legal profession. Sara is a Past Chair of the Administrative Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association. She served as a member of the SOAR Model Rules Committee who drafted model procedural rules for Ontario tribunals. Sara attended Osgoode Hall Law School and was called to the bar in Ontario in 1985.


Mark Mancini is a PhD student at the University of British Columbia, Peter A. Allard School of Law. He holds a J.D. from the University of New Brunswick, Faculty of Law, and an LL.M. from the University of Chicago Law School. He holds a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Bombardier award in support of his doctoral studies, which focus on the role of administrative law in constraining discretion in Canada's main carceral agency, Correctional Services Canada. He has been published in popular publications and academic journals across Canada. His research interests centre around the law of judicial review, administrative law more broadly, and statutory interpretation. He publishes the weekly newsletter, the Sunday Evening Administrative Review. 


December 13th, 2022 from 12:00 PM to  1:30 PM
Registration Fee
$25 + HST $ 25.00 + $ 3.25 HST