Looking Back on 2018

2018 is a year many of us won’t forget. There were new beginnings, fond farewells, adventures, anniversaries, and more. Let’s get into it:

A roof top party

We kicked off the year with a celebration of construction progress at Options for Homes’ Village by Main Station. Ted and our articling student Elliot were on hand to participate in the festivities. That’s them in the yellow hats. Now, 11 months later, the building is just about finished and many new homeowners have moved in, with the remainder to follow early next year. We’ve helped the project along from its inception – with all the legal work that goes into developing a condominium – and will be there when it comes time to officially make the buyers into owners.

A renaissance in Weston

With Artscape Weston Common nearing completion this year (it will open in February) and Options for Homes breaking ground on its project there, the Humber, Weston is clearly the up-and-coming place-to-be. Julie evidently agrees. She signed a purchase agreement for a suite at the Humber in October! When she moves in she’ll be neighbours with Celia. Go Weston!

An artistic hub

We were proud to help with the development of Artscape Weston Common and with Artscape’s just opened Daniels Launchpad (pictured above) which provides state-of-the-art multi-disciplinary creative production studios outfitted with creative tools, equipment and technology, as well as spacious, open work and collaboration spaces, and lake-view event venues. We can’t wait to see all the creativity that comes out of it!

A wedding, an anniversary, a birth, and an engagement

Hunter got married in April! Pictured: Hunter and his husband David just after the ceremony.


Also in April, Hugh’s Room Live celebrated its one year anniversary. The storied west-end music venue, previously known as Hugh’s Room (no ‘Live’), was reincarnated as a nonprofit after over five hundred community members pitched in and raised more than $150,000 in community bonds. Brian was instrumental in the effort and sits on the board of the new organization. You can often find him there soaking up the music!

In September Julie became a grandmother twice over! That’s her with brand-new-to-the-world baby Olive.


Fraser got engaged in October! Pictured: Fraser and his fiance Kasia on a foggy kayak ride shortly after their engagement.


Big numbers galore!

Speaking of milestones, our client SolarShare hit several big ones.

They hit 14 MW in total capacity (they were below 10 MW last year), built a number of new projects, bringing their total to 49 projects and surpassed $38 million invested in Solar Bonds by more than 1,600 total investors! Impressive!


Celia travelled all across the country this year giving talks and running workshops. She visited Victoria, Winnipeg, Sudbury, Ottawa and many places in between. The picture above is our booth at the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association’s annual congress in Ottawa in April.

Cannabis legalization was the big topic this year. All told, Celia gave 9 talks about what legalization means for housing providers. Though she was the most prolific speaker (add another 14 talks about human rights in housing and one on assisted dying to your tally), Celia wasn’t the only one. Claudia, Safia, Michael and Shelina all made it out to conferences where they participated in panels or gave talks.


After spending the holidays home with her family in the Philippines, Norlinda took a 16 hour journey to the mountain province of Kalinga, in northern Philippines. There, she was tattooed by Apo Whang-Od, a member of the Butbut Tribe and, at 101 years-old, the oldest and last surviving hand–tap tattoo artist. Whang-Od, a living legend and one of the Philippines’ national treasures, has been tattooing since the age of 15 using lemon thorns, charcoal and a small bamboo wand as hammer. Traditionally she tattooed the women and warriors of the tribe.

Norlinda chose to be tattooed with images of a mountain range and a shield – symbols for stability and humanity and a connection to the ancestral warriors who protected the tribe from colonizers and other enemies.

She says: “Apo put her last stroke and a dab of coconut oil to heal the wound faster. She looked at me with approval and smiled, leaving me with renewed sense of self, determined, strong, proud. I was peaceful. I was home.”

Charlie traveled to Egypt and saw King Tut’s mummy in his tomb. (Though without a photo we have a hard time believing him.)

New faces (and kittens), sad goodbyes

Brynn Leger

We welcomed articling student, Brynn, to the firm in July. 2018 has been a big year for her, what with graduating law school, passing the bar exam and starting articling. She says “I have enjoyed working with our housing co-op clients and getting to know some of them. I also have learned a lot about charitable registration, and regulation and human rights obligations for employers and housing providers. Still lots to learn!”

We were sad to say goodbye this year to Lauren and Katie, who both left to pursue jobs in the non-profit housing world. And we were gratified to welcome back Claudia (pictured above) as an associate. She articled with us in 2016-17.

We also said hello to April, who joined us as our newest legal assistant. Pictured: April (in white) flanked by Fatima, Tania, Hunter, Becky and Mariya.

Brian and his partner Mary adopted a kitten! Burgee. (Kitten’s are traditionally used as Christmas tree decorations, right?)

Finally, we were all saddened to lose Celia’s husband Jack this November when he chose to end his life with a medically assisted death after fighting off lung cancer for nearly 3 years. Celia has raised over $6,000 in her current campaign for Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. You can donate here.

Above, Jack and Celia pose with their dogs Molly and Bidi in autumn of 2018.


Happy New Year!

All the best for 2019, from all of us at Iler Campbell.

We took the above picture at our annual holiday lunch. (Celia, Safia, Michael and Charlie missed the photo-op.)