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York 2010 International Conference

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Brian Goodman

Brian Goodman
[ ]

Chairperson, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Brian Goodman was called to the Ontario Bar in 1974 and has a Masters Degree in Public Law. Before joining the Ontario Civil Service in 1983, he held a number of senior legal and executive positions at the Office of the Ontario Ombudsman. He has served as Chair of the Rent Review Hearings Board and acted as Mining and Lands Commissioner. He has been Co-Chair of the Dispute Resolution Forum, a Board member of the Council of Canadian Administrative Tribunals (CCAT) and Co-Chair of CCAT’s 2008 Annual Conference, Chair of the Conference of Ontario Boards and Agencies (COBA), and Chair of the Society of Ontario Adjudicators and Regulators (SOAR) Committee on First Principles of Administrative Justice.

Before being appointed in May 1998 to the position of Executive Lead, Agency Reform for Ontario’s Ministry of the Attorney General, he was Assistant Deputy Attorney General, Public Law. From 1997 to 1999, Mr. Goodman co-chaired the Agency Reform Working Group, which advised and supported the work of the Agency Reform Commission and subsequently was responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Commission’s recommendations. Mr. Goodman also represented the Ministry on the Agency Sector Council.

Mr. Goodman was awarded the SOAR medal in 2000 in recognition of his many contributions to administrative justice. In 2001, following a stint as a member of the Consent and Capacity Board, Mr. Goodman was appointed a member of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, and assigned to the Convention Refugee Determination Division in Toronto. He was reappointed in 2003. Since joining the IRB, Mr. Goodman has heard and decided numerous claims for refugee protection from claimants from the Middle East, Eastern Europe and the United States.

In 2006, Mr. Goodman was named Deputy Chairperson of the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD). In this capacity, Mr. Goodman led the Division through the planning and implementation of IAD Innovation to transform the IAD into a more flexible and proactive tribunal. Mr. Goodman was designated Interim Chairperson of the IRB in March 2007, and was confirmed in this position three months later. Since becoming Chairperson Mr. Goodman has continued to pursue the integration of the Board’s three divisions as well as specific initiatives such as the implementation of a new code of conduct for decision-makers and a review of the Board’s organizational and management structures. In 2009, Mr. Goodman was elected to the governing Council of the International Association of Refugee Law Judges.