Ambassador Profiles

The 2017-2018 Law Student Ambassadors are pleased to correspond with prospective or admitted JD students. 

Adam Lazar
Adam was born and raised in North Vancouver where he graduated with a BA in Communication Studies at Capilano University. Following a two-year hiatus from his undergraduate degree to found and operate a small business in Ontario, the call of the mountains drew him back to beautiful British Columbia.

At Allard, Adam has been a member of the Allard Law Students’ Society Social Council, Legal Education Outreach, Allard’s Law Games team, the intramural volleyball and soccer teams, and the Bobinski Business Law Clinic. He worked as the Allard Law Admissions Clerk in his second year of law school and is currently employed at the Vancouver office of an international law firm for temporary summer articles. He will also be completing a semester on exchange in the Netherlands in his third year. Adam is excited to meet prospective students and assist them in preparing for the challenges and rewards of attending Allard Hall.

Brandon Manhas
Brandon was born and raised on beautiful Vancouver Island in the city of Nanaimo. Loving the island life, he stayed in Nanaimo and did his undergraduate degree at Vancouver Island University where he earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a major in Finance. Following his degree, it was time for him to leave the small town life and come to Vancouver to study at the Allard School of Law.

In his first year at Allard, he was actively involved in the Allard Law and Business Society (LBS). As well, Brandon was involved in Allard athletics, participating in both the Allard Hockey and Rugby teams. Last year, Brandon took on many leadership roles. Continuing with his prior clubs, he served as Co-President of the LBS, President of the Allard hockey team, and Vice-President of the Rugby club. Added to that, Brandon was the Large Firm Representative with the Career Services Office and one of the Student Coordinators for the Charity Hoop-Law Basketball Tournament. Now entering his third year, he is continuing his positions with the Allard hockey team and Hoop-Law.

In his free time, Brandon loves to watch and play sports (die hard Canucks fan), travel with his family, and in general spend time with his friends trying new activities. Brandon is excited at the opportunity to talk to new prospective students and answer any questions you may have about the law school.

Brendon Easton
Brendon was born and raised in Victoria, British Columbia and is a member of the Namgis First Nation. Brendon completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Victoria with a BA in Political Science and a minor in Business. Following graduation, Brendon was accepted into the Aboriginal Youth Internship Program and worked for the Provincial Government and the Native Courtworkers and Counselling Association of BC.

During his first year at the Peter A. Allard School of Law, Brendon was involved with the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program (LSLAP), the Indigenous Law Students’ Association, the Legal Education Outreach Program, and the Allard Circus hockey team.

In the future, Brendon hopes to complete both the Specialization in Aboriginal Law and the Business Law Concentration, with the hopes of working in a national firm. Brendon is enthusiastic about law school and looks forward to sharing that enthusiasm with interested and incoming students.

Outside of Law School, Brendon enjoys bicycling around the city, sipping coffee, reading books, swimming, and adventuring. Brendon recently returned from a trip to Israel, Jordan, Greece, Italy and the UK and looks forward to travelling again soon. Please feel free to contact Brendon with any questions you may have.

Catherine Provan
Cate was born in the UK and raised in North Vancouver. She graduated from the University of British Columbia in 2015 with a BA in International Relations, and took a year off to work and travel before starting at the Allard School of Law in 2016.

At Allard, Cate is now a second year student. To date, she has volunteered with the Law Students’ Legal Assistance Program (LSLAP), the Legal Education Outreach program (LEO), and the BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre as a researcher. She also currently holds the position of summer student in the Career Services Office, which involves liaising with firms, planning firm events, and updating career resources for students.

Looking forward, Cate is excited to begin her clinical work with the Innocence Project in September. As an Ambassador, Cate is excited to meet prospective students and assist them in exploring the opportunities that Allard has to offer.

Elisabeth Giffin
Elisabeth is from the true East Coast: the Maritimes! She did her undergraduate degree in International Development at the University of Ottawa and then spent a year in Australia working for a start-up and meeting kangaroos before coming to the Allard School of Law. During her first two years at Allard, Elisabeth (sort of) learned how to play rugby with the Honey Badgers team, took a road trip to Oregon to attend a conference with the Environmental Law Group and became a Student Caseworker with the Innocence Project

Elisabeth works as a Research Assistant for multiple professors on issues including the rights of migrant workers and Canada’s deportation policies. So far, her main areas of interest are in criminal law, immigration and employment. In her third year, Elisabeth will participate in the Judicial Externship program, a unique opportunity which allows students to observe court and work with provincial court judges on a daily basis. 

Outside of law school Elisabeth loves to snowboard, dance wildly, memorize every word to every Disney song, spend way too much time in airports (aka travel), pretend to know how to cook and find dogs to pat. 

Elise Kohno
Elise is a third year law student who is born and raised in Vancouver. She attended the University of Toronto where she studied Criminology and Sociology while playing on the Varsity soccer team. She moved back to British Columbia for law school to escape Ontario’s unbearable winters.

During her time in law school, Elise has been actively involved in student government. She has been an executive member of the Allard Law Students’ Society (ALSS) and the Women’s Caucus, participated in the Legal Education Outreach Program, attended Law Games, and was a member of Allard’s intramural soccer and volleyball teams. Elise was selected for the 2016 Peter Burns Moot Team and represented UBC at the MacIntyre Cup Western Final Competition. Elise is currently one of the student coordinators for the Charity Hoop-Law Basketball Tournament, which raised over $70,000 dollars for local charities last year.

In the summer of 2016, Elise worked at the law school as the Orientation Coordinator. This summer, Elise will be working in Vancouver at a national law firm for temporary summer articles. After graduation, Elise will be clerking at the British Columbia Supreme Court.

Elise is extremely passionate about the unique, collegial Allard community and treasures the bonds and friendships she has formed at law school. Elise is looking forward to meeting with prospective students and sharing her passion and enthusiasm for The Peter A. Allard School of Law!

Ellie Rock
Ellie is a born and raised Vancouverite, though she expanded her love for B.C. by completing her Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Victoria.  Following her BComm, Ellie took a one-year hiatus from school to travel Europe and work as a Business Analyst at the BC Utilities Commission.

During her first year at the Peter A. Allard School of Law, Ellie was an active member of the Allard Law and Business Society (ALBS), the Women’s Caucus, and Allard’s own intramural Ultimate Frisbee team. Now entering her second year, Ellie will take up the role of Co-President of the ALBS in addition to her continuing involvement in other areas. She is spending the summer between first and second year working as an In-House Legal Intern at a large downtown Vancouver e-commerce company.

Outside of law school, Ellie loves to run, read, and explore – both locally and abroad. She can often be found researching her next great adventure (and/or brunch spot). Ellie looks forward to meeting with prospective students and welcomes any and all questions about Allard Law! 

Heather Manly
Heather was raised in Ladysmith and Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. She also spent time in Ottawa in her teenage years. She is one of 4 children and has had to contend with 3 brothers growing up! Heather is also a proud member of the Haisla Nation from Kitamaat Village; situated on the stunning northwest coast of BC.

As a mature student, Heather is currently on leave with the Ontario Provincial Police. She has been a police officer for over 20 years and has been posted to many communities throughout the province. Among her various postings, Heather’s time serving in remote, northern, fly-in-only, Aboriginal communities has been a particular highlight. Her experiences there have been some of the most challenging and rewarding. She has also spent many years as an In-Service Training Instructor teaching uniform members in the area of Use of Force. As well, Heather has taught Police Recruits at the Ontario Police College. The opportunity to coach and develop new Recruits has been her greatest joy. 

Heather is fulfilling a 10-year dream of attending law school and feels privileged to be studying at UBC. She is enrolled in the Indigenous Legal Studies Program (ILSP). Her goal is to practice Aboriginal and Criminal law upon graduation with a focus on restorative justice. 

In her spare time Heather enjoys being at the beach, hiking and spending time with family. Now that she is back on the beautiful west coast she is keen to take up skiing again and to find some time to surf in Tofino. Heather is keen to hear from prospective students and is looking forward to sharing all that Allard has to offer.

Jasmine Der
Jasmine is a second year law student who was born and raised in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. She completed her undergraduate degree in Anatomy & Cell Biology at the University of Saskatchewan before coming straight to law school.

In her first year at Allard, Jasmine was involved in the Women’s Caucus, Legal Education Outreach, and was elected Careers Committee representative for her first year section. 

This coming year, Jasmine will serve as a Career Events Representative on the Careers Committee as well as VP of External Affairs on the Women’s Caucus. Coming from a science background, Jasmine has a strong interest in intellectual property law. Outside of law school, Jasmine is a passionate jazz pianist and enjoys performing and teaching.

Josh Sved
Josh was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. He completed his HBA at the University of Toronto with a double major in Commerce and Communication Studies. While working on his undergraduate degree he was involved in operating and growing a small in-home personal training company. He has also lived abroad in Australia, and traveled throughout Europe and Southeast Asia.

Josh is a second year student at Allard Law. In his first year, he was actively involved in the Allard community. As a first-year representative on the Allard Law Students’ Society Social Council he organized a number of student events, including Friday Socials, Movember, and Trike Race. As a Pro Bono Students Canada (PBSC) volunteer he co-hosted Common Law Radio on Vancouver Co-op Radio. In his second year, Josh will be involved with the Bobinski Business Law Clinic during the fall term. He also looks forward to participating in the Legal Buddy program and serving as an Ambassador to assist prospective and new students in navigating the many challenges and opportunities one faces at law school.

In the future, he plans on completing the Business Law Concentration and hopes to secure a position at a large national firm. Josh is interested in environmental law, intellectual property, and emerging technologies and looks forward to gaining knowledge and experience in these areas.

Outside of law school, Josh enjoys an active lifestyle by running, biking, hiking, snowboarding, and practicing martial arts. He also enjoys watching sports and movies, and can be found taking in the many sights around Vancouver with his dog Odin or on a patio sipping craft beer with friends.

Julie O’Connell
Julie is never completely sure how to answer where she’s from. She was born and initially raised in Boston, Massachusetts by two Irish ex-pats and later grew up in the Lower Mainland. After relocating from Horseshoe Bay to Kitsilano, it is safe to say she enjoys close proximity to the ocean, yoga, and good coffee. While completing her BA in Art History at UBC, Julie also worked in childcare for several years.

At the Peter A. Allard School of Law, Julie is involved with the Artists’ Legal Outreach Clinic and the Peer Tutoring Program. Julie has since worked as a Review Officer Student Intern at WorkSafeBC and will participate in the Judicial Externship Program in her third year. To decompress, Julie enjoys ballet barre fitness, cycling, and walks to the beach. Julie also loves Scandinavian crime fiction and is currently planning a trip to Iceland.

Julie is especially willing to speak with individuals who are feeling apprehensive about balancing the workload of the 1L curriculum or entering law school from a non-traditional background.

Lee Hawkings
Lee is a second year law student from the land of the midnight sun, Whitehorse, Yukon. Before coming to the Allard School of Law, Lee completed a B.Sc. in Environmental Science at Carleton University and returned back North to work as a fish and wildlife Biologist. During first year, Lee was involved with many school clubs including becoming a co-chair of the Environmental Law Group, as well as participating and volunteering with the Hoop-Law Charity Basketball Tournament, Law Games, the Rugby team, and Pro Bono Students Canada. Next year, Lee will be a clinician for the Bobinski Business Law clinic and an assistant editor of the Career Service Office's Careers Guide. 

Lee is very interested in the nexus of business and the environment and hopes to use his experiences to work in some capacity in the environmental regulatory field, promoting sustainable development practices. This summer Lee will be returning home to Yukon to work as a field biologist and take advantage of the endless daylight and outdoor activities to be had. When not at school or work you will find Lee in the outdoors skiing, biking, hiking, running or kite surfing.

Maddy MacDonald
Maddy grew up in Calgary before attending the University of Victoria, where she studied psychology and ran on the Vikes cross country and track teams. While studying psychology, she became interested in the intersection of mental health and wellbeing, interpersonal relationships, and the law. Her desire to purse a legal education solidified after spending a year in India working in refugee protection at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 

Some of the highlights of Maddy's first year of law school include organizing feminist initiatives with the Centre for Feminist Legal Studies and the Allard Law Women's Caucus, teaching yoga to her classmates as part of the Wellness Committee, and getting to know her professors and peers. Maddy is primarily interested in criminal law, and will participate in the Indigenous Community Legal Clinic in the winter to get some real-life experience in this practice area. 

Outside of law school, Maddy enjoys running, yoga, being outside, and hanging out with family and friends (including her dog Piper). She is the Orientation Coordinator for the class of 2020, and can't wait to meet the incoming students!

Manbeen Saini
Manbeen was born in India and immigrated to Canada in her early teens. She holds a B.A. (major in Criminology) from Simon Fraser University, BC. Prior to law school, she worked as a Victim Support Worker specializing in power based crimes. Having a passion to work with women and children, she volunteered for numerous organizations, including Battered Women Support Services and the Elizabeth Fry Society of Greater Vancouver, before joining law school. After finishing her first year of law, she worked as a summer intern at Surrey Women’s Centre, a non-profit organization.

In her first year, Manbeen actively participated in the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program, applying the theory learned in law school into the real world. During her second year, she was selected to be a member of the Innocence Project, an experience she highly values.

Outside of school, she enjoys spending time with her 4-year-old daughter and absolutely loves being a mom. She is happy to discuss her adventures of being a full time student and a parent, in addition to answering any other questions from prospective/new students.

Martin Lay
Martin is a second year Law student born and raised in Richmond. He attended the University of British Columbia where he received a degree in Psychology. Martin also spent a semester abroad at the University of Manchester. After his undergraduate studies, Martin spent a year working various jobs including managing a tire shop and working as a travel agent. 

In his first year at Allard, Martin was an active member in the Allard Law Students' Society (ALSS) sitting on the Academic Committee as a first-year representative. He also participated in the Legal Education Outreach Program, attended Law Games, and was a member of Allard’s Hoop-Law team. In his second year, Martin will be an executive member of the ALSS as VP Social. He is also the VP of the Sports, Entertainment and Law Society and one of the Student Coordinators for the Hoop-Law Charity Basketball Tournament.

Martin loves hanging around the school and you can usually find him there most hours of the day. When he does leave Allard Hall (rare), Martin enjoys hiking the various trails of the lower mainland, camping and playing his two favourite sports: basketball and squash. Martin also self-identifies as a backpacker. Please feel free to contact him if you have any questions!

Nicole Wong
Nicole was born and raised in Richmond, completing her B.Sc. in Biology at UBC. After graduating, she spent a year travelling around Europe and Southeast Asia and teaching English before starting at the Allard School of Law. 

In her first year, Nicole participated in the Legal Education Outreach Program and volunteered with the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program as a clinician. This summer, she is working at WorkSafeBC as a student intern. 

In her free time, Nicole enjoys reading, hiking, and is attempting to learn how to play the ukulele (with mixed results). Please feel free to contact her with any questions! 

Robert Hanson
Robert was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia, and hasn’t left since. He graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Psychology and minoring in Political Science. During his undergraduate studies, Robert worked as a research lab manager in the Center for Health and Coping in the Psychology Department. After graduating, Robert took two years off to work as an ESL teacher.

At Allard, Robert served as a fist-year representative and the Chairperson on the Careers Committee, served on the Executive Board of the UBC Law Review, worked as a Peer Tutor, and participated in the Legal Education Outreach Program. In the summer after first year, Robert worked as the Summer Student in the Career Services Office. This summer, he will complete his summer articles at the Vancouver office of a large international business law firm. Please feel free to contact him if you have any questions!

Sarah Bernamoff
Sarah was born and raised in Calgary, and holds an MBA from the University of Calgary. She holds a double B.A. in International Relations and English Literature, and is a trained classical and jazz musician and dancer. Prior to law school she worked in the areas of business development, public relations and artist management. She also recently founded a social justice organization that focuses on global human rights and leadership development for youth.

Sarah is active in a variety of Allard Law and UBC-wide initiatives, including the Criminal Law Club and the Indigenous Law Students Association. Sarah was awarded the Dean’s Public Interest Fellowship for her work in summer 2015/16 with a non-profit organization stationed in the Middle East, focusing on global human rights. This year Sarah articled with the BC Provincial Crown as part of UBC’s Criminal Clinic under Judge Galati. Sarah is off to Toronto this summer for summer articles with a corporate law firm.

Sarah is enthusiastic about law school and believes legal literacy is a great asset, regardless of one’s specific discipline. She is happy to answer questions and meet in person. Please feel free to contact her! 

Shawnee Monchalin
Shawnee will be a second year J.D. student at the Allard School of Law in September and has a background of mixed descent: Huron, Metis, Algonquin and Italian. She completed her undergraduate studies at the University of British Columbia, with a major in Political Science and a minor in Law and Society. During her B.A., she was part of the Women’s Varsity Rugby team and held many part-time service industry jobs. In the year post-undergraduate and pre-law school, Shawnee travelled to 11 countries where she volunteered, worked, and explored. 

At Allard Law, Shawnee is Vice President of the Indigenous Law Students’ Association (ILSA), the ILSA representative for the Women’s Caucus, and plays on the men’s rugby team, the Beavers. 

Over the summer, Shawnee will be an intern at Miller Thomson LLP and during her second year at Allard she will participate in the Indigenous Community Legal Clinic. 

 If you have any questions about leading a balanced life while in law school or about how to get involved in the Allard and greater Vancouver communities, she would be happy to answer them! 

Thomas Fung
Thomas was born and raised in Vancouver, where he completed his B.Sc. in Microbiology and Immunology at UBC. Thomas then obtained his Master of Public Health in Hong Kong before returning to Vancouver to enter law school.

In law school, Thomas volunteered as a clinician for the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program (LSLAP) in Chinatown. Thomas is also VP External for the Intellectual Property Club and a Peer Tutor.

Outside of law school, Thomas enjoys making short videos, playing soccer, and exploring the mountains. He will be spending his summer at a large national firm in downtown Vancouver.

Tylar Wagner
Tylar spent her childhood in Trinidad, Germany, France, Chile, and the United States. She moved to Canada when she was 14 and went to high school and completed her undergraduate degree in Kelowna, British Columbia. She graduated from the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan Campus with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Psychology. Before law school, Tylar worked in the wine industry in the Okanagan and did lots of travelling. She has lived in Vancouver for two years and hopes to stay in Vancouver after law school.

In her first year, Tylar volunteered with Pro Bono Students Canada (PBSC) in the Family Law “Live Help” Program. She was also a First-year Representative for the Women’s Caucus, participated in the Legal Education Outreach Program, and was a member of the UBC Student Animal Defence Fund and the Centre for Feminist Legal Studies.

In her free time, Tylar loves to travel, cook, wakeboard, ski, and take lots of yoga and barre classes.