City Solicitor and Director of Legal & Real Estate Services

February 12 2021
Industries Public administration
Categories Legal, Paralegal, Management, Consulting, Administrative, Public, Regulatory, Govt., Real Estate, Municipal, Health, Education, Environment, Govt., NPO, Social & Community Work
Brantford, ON

Reporting to the General Manager of People, Legislated Services and Planning, and a member of the Senior Management Team, the City Solicitor provides strategic direction, leadership and oversight to the Legal and Real Estate Services Department which includes Legal; Real Estate; Insurance & Risk Management; and the Provincial Offences Administration. As City Solicitor, you will have the general responsibility for the legal affairs of the corporation and for giving professional legal advice and recommendations to the Municipal Council and its administrative staff in relation to a variety of legal matters. You will oversee and provide sound and timely legal advice and business solutions on a variety of complex legal issues, working with a team of in-house lawyers and, as needed, external counsel. You will also provide direction to lawyers appearing before all levels of court and tribunals and ensure the development of the in-house legal team and support staff.

The role requires proven success as a legal advisor to governing bodies, with extensive experience in municipal law, and as a strategic leader in ensuring a responsive service culture in public, private or not-for-profit sectors. It also requires proven results in building and sustaining collaborative, respectful and effective stakeholder relationships both within and outside of the organization, high political acuity and the ability to balance business enabling solutions and services with compliance with legal, legislative and policy frameworks and fiscal responsibility.

Specific accountabilities include:

  1. The provision of legal advice and counsel to the Municipal Council in an objective, non-partisan manner and contentious file management as and when issues arise. This requires clear understanding of the governing role of Council, the changing political landscape, the evolution of practice across a wide range of municipal, planning and development, and human resources issues, to name a few. Trust, discretion and responsiveness are critical to bringing forward recommended solutions in a timely manner. This also requires courage and judgement to provide objective counsel about the legal implications and impacts/consequences of policy issues and actions.
  2. Legal counsel, advice, direction and services to senior management and client groups including, where appropriate, wholly owned subsidiaries of the corporation, as well as committees of Council. This includes effective management of the demand and supply of third-party service providers for legal and human resource files which require external counsel, representing the client voice on direction, and liaising with management and Council to ensure effective file management.
  3. Developing strong relationships with all stakeholders and building credibility and trust with Council, management, and externally with business and community stakeholders.
  4. Setting the overall strategic direction of the Legal & Real Estate Services Department, including establishing and tracking departmental goals, policies and short and long-term objectives that are consistent with the overall directions and priorities of Council. This involves developing business plans, operating budgets and financial plans to address current and future financial considerations, while maintaining a high quality of strategic, operational and service support to Council and management.
  5. Providing sound leadership to and fostering a respectful and collaborative environment within the Legal & Real Estate Services Department. While protecting the corporation's interests and rights and sustaining the high quality of advice and services, this role will enhance the provision of efficient and effective solution-focused business advice and service delivery in support of the corporation's business strategies and goals through modern best practices, leveraging of technology, ensuring fiscal responsibility and developing the capability of the talent within the department.

As a member in good standing of the Law Society of Ontario, you have a post-secondary degree in law and a minimum of seven years in a senior management level within a government legal environment or directly related municipal government law experience or equivalent experience deemed acceptable to the corporation – this could be in the public, private or not-for-profit sector with challenges similar to the municipal corporation. Your well-developed knowledge and understanding of relevant provincial legislation affecting municipal operations is supported by strong verbal and written communication skills and your track record as a collaborative and business-oriented practice leader with a passion for serving the community. Able to exercise significant discretion and sensitivity and maintain a high degree of confidentiality with regard to municipal law matters, you have knowledge and experience in managing an effective staff team and the ability to establish an achievable, effective, and responsive departmental work plan.

Apply now! network