Award announcement

W. Cory Wanless receives U of T Law Alumni Award

March 20, 2023

The University of Toronto Faculty of Law Alumni Awards biennially recognize the exceptional contributions of valued community members.

The Ann Wilson and Robert Prichard Alumni Award for Community and Professional Service honours recent graduates who demonstrate the highest standards of professional integrity, excellence and leadership, and who has made a significant contribution to the legal profession and community.

A partner at Waddell Phillips LLP, Cory Wanless has been actively litigating cases of public importance for almost a decade. He has represented clients before all levels of court in Ontario and Alberta, and has argued at the Supreme Court of Canada. Cory has particular interest and experience in complex civil litigation, especially as it relates to corporate accountability, human rights, Indigenous rights, police and state accountability, anti-racism and defending human rights defenders. Cory devotes a sizable portion of his practice to access to justice cases.

Cory often represents clients in high-profile and precedent-setting cases. He currently is co-counsel in ground-breaking corporate accountability lawsuits against a Canadian mining company regarding human rights abuse in Guatemala. Cory was lead counsel for the University of Toronto Faculty of Law International Human Rights Program in an intervention at the Supreme Court in a case regarding the use of forced labour at a Canadian-owned mine in Eritrea.

On the domestic front, Cory represents clients in Charter and human rights lawsuits against police and other law enforcement – often in cases involving racism and racial profiling. Cory also represents business and individuals in employment, defamation and negligence cases.

Cory is a frequent speaker on the topics of corporate accountability, mining and human rights, and has guest-lectured at various universities and faculties of law throughout Canada.

Outside of law, Cory currently co-teaches a course in Ethics, Society, and Law at Trinity College, University of Toronto, and sits on the board of an environmental education charity that fosters in youth resilience and connection to nature through outdoor experiences.

The U of T Law alumni awardees will be recognized during a fireside chat on Thursday, March 30, 2023. Alumni and colleagues are welcome to attend, and to join us in congratulating the 2022 recipients.

For nomination details or more information, please contact

University of Toronto Faculty of Law

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W. Cory Wanless (JD 2008)

University of Toronto Faculty of Law

Law School

University of Toronto

Year Of Call


Area Of Practice

Human Rights