Full circle for former Toronto mayor David Miller

The former mayor is heading back to his roots as a lawyer

By Todd Harrison

On Monday February 28th, 2011

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photo by RokashiAs the Toronto Star reported, former mayor David Miller has returned to Aird & Berlis, where he’ll act as counsel, International Business and Sustainability. In his pre-politics days, he had an immigration, employment and corporate litigation practice at the firm, where he articled after attending law school at U of T. He made partner at age 30.

In the introduction to his memoir, Witness to a City, Miller writes that he had a longstanding interest in politics, but “Aird & Berlis had me work on one client that made me think about politics in a much more practical and immediate way: the Toronto Islands Residents Association.” It was representing Islands residents in their fight with the City and Metro councils to keep their homes that inspired his entry into the municipal arena.

Miller’s appointment is the latest in a string of announcements in the last year or so about former politicians now working at law firms. Ogilvy hired former Ontario attorney general Michael Bryant as an advisor in late 2009, while Bryant was in the midst of fighting the since-dropped charges against him in the death of cyclist Darcy Allen Sheppard. Mike Harris, meanwhile, left Goodmans for Cassels Brock a year ago because of a conflict of interest resulting from his position on the board of Globalive. Another former premier, David Peterson, is chair of Cassels Brock and the subject of a recent Toronto Star profile about his post-politics life and influence.


Photo by Rokashi