Our Team:
Working Together

LAWS has offices at both the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and Osgoode Hall Law School at York Univeristy. Our team is made up of six committed and talented staff members including the Executive Director, three Program Managers, a Program Administrator and a Program Assistant. LAWS also relies on the help of work study students and law student summer staff.

— Our Staff

Eleonora Dimitrova

Executive Director (Currently on Secondment)

Eleonora Dimitrova graduated from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law with a combined J.D./M.A. in International Relations.

After her admission to the Ontario Bar, Eleonora worked for Lawyers for Human Rights, an independent human rights organisation with a 40-year track record of human rights activism and public interest litigation in South Africa. Eleonora practiced in the areas of human rights, refugee protection and access to justice in their Durban office. Following her return to Canada, she joined Law in Action Within Schools (LAWS) as the Osgoode Hall Law School Program Manager and spearheaded the program's expansion in the Jane and Finch and York University Heights communities.

Eleonora is presently the Executive Director of Law in Action Within Schools (LAWS) and oversees the University of Toronto Faculty of Law Youth Summer Program.

Eleonora is passionate about youth outreach, legal education and civic engagement and has been extensively involved with LAWS in various capacities for over 10 years.

Mary Owusu

Acting Executive Director

Mary brings extensive years of experience in working with community, human rights, and access to justice initiatives. As a passionate champion for supporting system change around equity, diversity, and inclusion, she takes pride in being our first black Director, LAWS and is committed to expanding the program's impact and reach. Holding a JD from Osgoode Hall Law School, Mary has contributed both internationally and locally, collaborating with community-based organizations such as the Female Lawyers Association Gambia (FLAG), Foundation for Human Rights Initiative Uganda (FHRI), the award-winning African DefendDefenders organization, the Pan-African Human Rights Defenders Network (PAHRDN), Parkdale Community Legal Services, Rexdale Community Legal Clinic, and the Health Justice Program pilot.

During her tenure at LAWS, Mary has played an instrumental role in spearheading the development and expansion of LAWS Africentric core program. She has implemented educational outreach and experiential programs in law for over a thousand students across various LAWS newcomer, core, alumni and community initiatives. In recognition of her outstanding contributions, Mary was honored in 2023 with the inaugural Ubuntu Lifetime Achievement Award. This award acknowledges her as an African-Canadian leader and educator whose lifework embodies the fundamental principles of Maat and Ubuntu: harmony, reciprocity, balance, integrity, truth, social justice, and universal love. Mary is also an integral part of the lead team overseeing the University of Toronto Faculty of Law Youth Summer Program (YSP).

Mary has actively served on the inaugural Black Future Lawyers (BFL) Working Group. Currently, she sits on the EDI committee and the Black Student Access Process (BSAP) admissions subcommittee, showcasing a deep commitment to building inclusive communities.

Stephanie Nilausen

Program Manager (Central Technical School, Monarch Park C.I., and Northview Heights S.S.)

Stephanie has dedicated the last ten years of her career to justice education and access to justice initiatives.

As a Program Manager at the Ontario Justice Education Network, a not-for-profit, non-governmental organization established by the three Chief Justices of Ontario, Stephanie spearheaded a novel area of programming for elementary school students, promoting civic engagement, advocacy, conflict resolution skills and an understanding of the justice system to over 700 students each year in diverse communities.

As the bilingual Program Manager at the National Office for Pro Bono Students Canada, Stephanie managed seven law school chapters in Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. She successfully developed seven new Family Law Projects to assist unrepresented litigants in family courts across Canada, working closely with the legal community in multiple jurisdictions.

Stephanie first began volunteering at LAWS when she was a law student. She joined LAWS in 2011 and has since managed both Core and Newcomer programming and worked at seven LAWS partner high schools across the TDSB.

Stephanie has a B.A. in Psychology from the University of British Columbia and a J.D. from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.

Presila Mason

Program Manager (Westview Centennial S.S., Marc Garneau C.I., and Greenwood S.S.)

Donna Mobbs

Program Administrator

Sukhpreet Sangha

Program Manager (Currently on Secondment)

Sukhpreet is a lawyer and artist who holds a joint Honours Bachelor of Arts in English and Drama from the University of Waterloo, as well as a Juris Doctorate from Osgoode Hall Law School. Sukhpreet has practiced as a criminal defence lawyer and as a poverty lawyer, at a community legal clinic. In those roles, she appeared before all levels of court in Ontario, the Supreme Court of Canada, and several administrative tribunals. She has focused her career on access to justice and providing representation to marginalized communities. Sukhpreet is equally passionate about art and remains active as a theatre practitioner.

Julia Abbott

Fundraising Initiatives Coordinator

Julia was previously Manager of Membership, Programs and Regional Development at Canadian Women in Communications where she was responsible for the deployment and management of professional development programs and events offered to the CWC community. Successfully revitalizing the CWC Mentorship Program, Julia gained a strong passion for empowering others and is excited to now be a part of a program that includes empowering youth that may face barriers to post-secondary education; instilling confidence and igniting a passion within themselves.

Nefisa Ansong

Program Coordinator

Nefisa is currently in her 2L year at Lincoln Alexander School of Law in Toronto, and a proud LAWS alumni. Before law school, Nefisa worked in government both municipally and provincially, and made her way into the non-profit space to create programming for young people. Passionate about creating meaningful youth programming, Nefisa is elated to be working alongside the LAWS team to support the pilot program expansion to Lincoln Alexander School of Law.

Hailey Rocha

Program Assistant