Guthrie Award

The Law Foundation of Ontario created the Guthrie Award in 1996 to honour H. Donald Guthrie who served as a Foundation trustee for 21 years, including 13 years as Chair. The Guthrie Award recognizes outstanding individuals for their contributions to access to justice.

Guthrie Medal

The Guthrie Award recognizes access to justice champions. Past recipients have come from many directions – the judiciary, private bar, community legal clinics, and nonprofit organizations. They saw a chance to make a difference and took it. Guthrie recipients built bridges between youth and the justice system; advanced justice for Indigenous peoples; served women experiencing violence; and strengthened the community clinic system to assist people with low-incomes.

Guthrie Award recipients have:

  • Championed access to justice for all Canadians
  • Launched the country’s first law-and-justice themed high school program
  • Helped to understand and address the consequences and causes of violence against women
  • Contributed to legal education in Ontario
  • Advocated for freedom of speech and expression
  • Modernized the running of law libraries
  • Provided hands-on poverty law experience to law students

Learn about our Guthrie Award recipients

Nominations are now closed.

Guthrie Award recipients: joining a legacy of access to justice leaders

A Guthrie Award recipient joins the legacy of the Guthrie Award and becomes a member of an esteemed group recognized for their achievements in improving access to justice.

As part of the award, the recipient is presented with an engraved medal and the Foundation organizes a reception in the recipient’s honour. The reception is attended by guests of the recipient, as well as by trustees of The Law Foundation of Ontario and notable members of the bar and the justice sector. In previous years, the reception has been held at the Law Society of Ontario. Additionally, the Foundation announces the award recipient in media outlets, including print and social media.


For more information, please contact Kirsti Mathers McHenry, Director of Policy and Programs, at 416-598-1550 x 310 or

Guthrie Award

c/o The Law Foundation of Ontario

20 Queen Street West

Suite 3002, Box 19

Toronto, ON M5H 3R3