Don’t let Esther Oh’s soft voice and gentle demeanour fool you. This mild-mannered charity lawyer from Scarborough has been training in Muay Thai for 12 years. And she’s quite capable of delivering a spinning back-kick to your face.
“It’s almost like dancing: you have to make sure your steps are coordinated,” says Oh, a partner at the boutique charity law firm Carters. She is remarkably humble about her lethal combat skills. “Anyone can do it — you just have to learn the technique.”
Yet it’s still plenty of work. Oh trains three times a week, nearly two hours each session, her hands wrapped in tape for support as she spars with other fighters in her gym. This collaborative approach is what she loves most about the sport — and what she also loves most about her charity-law practice.
“It’s really rewarding to work with people from all sectors of society who are trying to make the world a better place,” says Oh, whose practice has her, among other things, incorporating nonprofits and helping charities comply with Canadian anti-terrorism laws — complicated, but satisfying, legal work. “If I’m going to be working late nights, it’s gratifying to know it’s going to support a good cause.”
Carter Professional Corporation
This story is from our Fall 2015 issue.