Lawyers and Staff

John Lawford

Executive Director/General Counsel

John Lawford is Executive Director and General Counsel of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) in Ottawa. John has been with PIAC since July 2003 and Executive Director and General Counsel since September 2012. Prior to coming to PIAC, John was a lawyer at a large national law firm doing medical-legal research. John has also been Research Director at a major Ottawa law firm. John was Special Projects Director and Webmaster for QUICKLAW Inc. from 1992 to 1999. He has an undergraduate degree in English and a Law degree from Queen’s University (1990).

John is active in the areas of telecommunications, privacy and financial services from a consumer perspective.

Michael Janigan

Special Counsel, Consumer and Regulatory Affairs

Michael Janigan is Special Counsel, Consumer and Regulatory Affairs at the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), working in Toronto, Canada. Mr. Janigan represents PIAC and its clients before the Ontario Energy Board and in transportation and competition act matters, as well as general consumer protection. Michael was Executive Director and General Counsel until taking on his new role in September 2012.

Prior to working for PIAC, Janigan was a city and regional councillor representing a downtown ward in the City of Ottawa. He was elected to that position in the community where he carried on a busy litigation legal practice.

Mr. Janigan was born in Ottawa and attended the University of Western Ontario, in London, Ontario where he obtained both his undergraduate degree in science and his LLB degree. He was called to the Bar of the Law Society of Upper Canada in 1980. He is also a member of the State Bar of California. He has received an LLM in competition law from the University of London. In addition to his position with PIAC, Mr. Janigan was counsel to the law firm of Scott Hempling and Associates, based in Washington, D.C.from 2001-2006. The Hempling firm provided legal advice to many state regulatory commissions across the United States on issues associated with energy and telecommunications competition and regulation.

Alysia Lau

Legal Counsel

Alysia Lau rejoined PIAC as Legal Counsel after articling with the organization. Her interests are in digital media and broadcasting, telecommunications, privacy, and research into vulnerable and low-income consumers. She has experience in public policy and legal commentary, having served on the editorial staff of legal blog,, and the York Centre for Public Policy and Law during her studies. She also previously interned with the Access to Justice cluster at UNDP Indonesia.

Alysia received her JD from Osgoode Hall Law School and a Bachelor of Arts and Science from McMaster University. Outside of PIAC, she also volunteers with the OIM Innercity Arts youth program.


Jonathan Bishop

Research & Parliamentary Affairs Analyst

Jonathan Bishop is a Research Analyst at the Ottawa office of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre. Prior to joining PIAC in August 2012, Jonathan was a Parliamentary Affairs and Stakeholder Relations Officer at the Competition Bureau. As well, he spent 8 years working in the Senate and the House of Commons as a Policy Advisor and Legislative Assistant. Jonathan holds a graduate degree in Political Science from Acadia University and an undergraduate degree from the University of New Brunswick.


Donna Brady

Office Administrator

Donna Brady joined PIAC in the spring of 1992 as full-time office administrator. Her background is in Business Administration. Previous to joining PIAC, she worked as the Administrative Assistant for a City and Regional Councillor.


Ben Segel-Brown

Articling Student

Ben Segel-Brown is articling at the Public Interest Advocacy Centre in Ottawa. He studied law at Queen’s University in Kingston. Prior his articles, Ben worked for the Parliamentary Budget Office where he helped negotiate access to information, plan legislative reforms, and write reports. During his legal studies, he also acted as a legal aid caseworker assisting low-income Kingston residents with landlord-tenant, victim compensation, creditor-debtor, and quasi-criminal files. He has a bachelor degree in Public Affairs and Policy Management from Carleton University.

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