1999-2000 Monsieur le professeur Irwin Cotler, Q.C
The Bar of Montreal is proud to bestow its medal recognising outstanding dedication to the cause of justice to Irwin Cotler, O.C., Professor of Law at McGill University. Professor Cotler has been a regular visiting professor at Harvard Law School and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is the recipient of honorary doctorates from Bar-llan University, Simon Fraser University, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Haifa University and York University and has been recognised internationally as a «scholar and advocate of international stature».
A constitutional and comparative law scholar, he has litigated every section of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms including landmark cases in the area of free-speech, women’s rights, minority rights, war crimes justice, prisoners’ rights and case law. He has testified as an expert witness on human rights before parliamentary committees in Canada, the United States, Russia, Sweden, Norway and Israel and has lectured at major international academic and professional gatherings in America, Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
Professor Cotler is a leader in the cause against racism and discrimination and has been at the forefront of the international struggle against apartheid as well as helping to develop legal remedies against racism in Canada and beyond.
Professor Cotler has been honoured many times by many distinguished lectureships and awards, which include Officer of the Order of Canada, the Samuel Bronfman Medal and various human rights’ awards. The Bar of Montreal honours one of its most prominent members who has made an outstanding contribution to the cause of human rights and justice and does his profession honour as the last recipient of this century.