2018 Precedent Setter Award Winner: Ren Bucholz

Meet the lawyer who has mastered one of the law’s fastest-changing practice areas

Ren Bucholz

Associate, Paliare Roland Rosenberg Rothstein LLP
Called to the bar in 2011

Ren Bucholz works in the future
. Before you start protesting, consider his track record. He’s in the midst of defending the right Canadians have to parody companies online. And when a Toronto accountant was the victim of an online smear campaign, Bucholz helped win him $700,000 in damages. He’s also represented Google twice, once on a case that reached the Supreme Court of Canada. He is, quite simply, one of the country’s top technology litigators.

Ren Bucholz-2

He often confronts a unique challenge: explaining social media and the internet to judges. “I try to simplify the concepts,” says the 37-year-old associate at Paliare Roland. “Most of the people I appear before didn’t grow up with this technology.”

Bucholz, by contrast, has been submerged in tech his whole working life. During his undergrad, he interned in San Francisco at the Electronic Frontier Foundation — a non-profit that, through pro bono cases, defends civil liberties in the digital world. Upon graduation, he worked there for five years before he decided to become a lawyer. That led him, in 2007, to Osgoode Hall — and, nine years later, to Paliare Roland. Today, he lives in the West End with his wife, theatre professor Laura Levin, and life is busy taking their two young sons to rock climbing and swimming lessons.

His caseload never lets up, but neither does his cool demeanor. “He has a mature presence,” says Rob Centa, the firm’s managing partner. “He’s always calm.” Meanwhile, tech law never stops evolving. “I can rarely find a precedent that is clearly analogous to my case,” says Bucholz. “But getting decision-makers to do something novel is exciting.”

Don’t forget to read about our other amazing winners.

This story is from our Summer 2018 Issue.

Photography by Kayla Rocca, hair and makeup by Michelle Calleja, shot on location at the Assembly Chef’s Hall