Osgoode Hall Law Journal first Black managing editor celebrated
March 11, 2017
Though holding the position for the last 10 months, it was only recently that Michael Thorburn found out he is the Osgoode Hall Law Journal first Black managing editor.
“I guess some research was being done on it and it was discovered that I am part of history,” he said.
Thorburn’s significant achievement was recognized at Osgoode’s Black Law Students Association annual Black History Month celebration at the York University campus last week.
“I am humbled they would take the time to honour me,” he said.
Born and raised in New Westminster, British Columbia, Thorburn – who was elected by his peers -- graduated from Simon Fraser University with a political science degree and was an Innocence Project caseworker before enrolling in Osgoode.
“I choose to come literally all the way across the country because Osgoode is renowned for its public interest work and community engagement,” the doctor of jurisprudence candidate noted. “I also like the electricity and diversity of this city and those are among several things that are driving me to stay here after I graduate from law school.”
Thorburn, who is the research & communications manager of the Citizenship Empowerment Project that seeks to empower Canadians from under-represented communities to learn about and engage with national legal and policy issues, will graduate in the next two months.
That will end his celebrated one-year term with the Journal which has been published continuously since 1958 and is run by a student board of editors. He has been with the publication for the last three years, serving as a senior editor before his historic elevation.
The Journal has earned a reputation for excellence in publishing scholarly articles that represent a wide range of perspectives about law and legal institutions. It also provides thorough, meticulous and efficient editorial services to the authors.
Thorburn, whose mother was born in Zimbabwe, will begin articling in the next few months.
“At the end of the day, I want to help as many people as possible,” he pointed out. “As long as I can fulfil that objective, I will work anywhere.”