I am Ronald G. Guertin. I have been practicing criminal law for over 40 years. I was born in Ottawa and first lived on Preston Street (in what is now known as Little Italy) at the corner of Spruce Street. My father, who was in the army, moved our family to a farmhouse between Osgoode and Metcalfe, Ontario. There was no central heating and no plumbing. There was a manual pump in the kitchen. My mother heated water in holding tanks on the side of two big woodstoves in our country kitchen.
Until we returned to the city, I attended a one-room schoolhouse where I was educated by a wondrous teacher, Mrs. Anderson. She taught eight grades simultaneously, an accomplishment that still stands out in my memory as a truly remarkable achievement.
When I was in grade four, my father was posted to the Gaza Strip where he served with the United Nations peacekeeping force, acting as a buffer between Egypt and Israel. He moved our family to the Sandy Hill area of Ottawa. I lived in Sandy Hill until 1980 when I moved to Vanier, where I continue to reside.
I attended St. Joseph primary and intermediate schools and St. Patrick's High School when it shared a campus with St. Patrick's College on Echo Drive. I attended Lisgar Collegiate Institute for my senior matriculation, returning to Echo Drive to receive my Bachelor of Arts in History and Philosophy from St. Patrick's College. I attended Common Law at the University of Ottawa for my law degree under the watchful gaze of the venerable Dean T. G. Feeney, an educator about whom you can only say that if you haven't experienced him, there is something missing in your life.
I was called to the Bar of Ontario on April 12, 1976 and have practiced law in Ottawa since that time. Over the course of my legal career I have achieved a considerable level of expertise and have devoted myself to the defence of persons charged with criminal offences. In 1995 I was certified by The Law Society of Upper Canada, my governing body, as being worthy to present myself as a Specialist in Criminal Law. I have endeavoured to live up to that designation by fiercely advancing the interests of the thousands of clients who have placed their lives, trust and future in my hands. I continue to act as a shield between the common person and the unlimited resources of the prosecutorial branch of the government.
I have carried on my practice of law as a sole practitioner in Ottawa area for over 40 years. My vast experience over that time has allowed me to develop and continue to provide a superior level of expertise in all areas of criminal law. When I assist you, I guarantee that I will instill in you a level of comfort, confidence and knowledge that you have retained the best representation, which assures you that your rights will be very well protected and you achieve the best possible result.
I have also been very active in the community at the charitable level, having served more than 10 years with the Children's Wish Foundation in many capacities, including Chair of the National Capital Chapter and as a Director on the National Board and a member of the National Executive.
I served as a trustee of The Carleton County Law Association for twelve years, the last four of which as a member of the Executive. I also served on the Board of Fem Hill School, a private school in the New Edinburgh area of Ottawa. I was, for many years, an instructor in criminal procedure at the Bar Admission Course, the last training a prospective lawyer received before he or she received accreditation to practice law in the Province of Ontario. The Bar Admission Course has now been discontinued.
I have remained as a resource person for young criminal counsel. I continue to train and mentor new lawyers through education projects and consultation on a pro bono basis. I am committed to carrying on my practice with the highest level of integrity and loyalty to my clients, while remaining true to the ideals of the legal process. I feel that my reputation has won me the confidence of my clients and the respect of my colleagues.