Usman Sheikh becomes first Canadian to receive prestigious American Bar Association award

The American Bar Association (ABA) has awarded Usman M. Sheikh, a Toronto-based litigation partner at Gowling WLG, with the 2016 Outstanding Subcommittee Chair Award. He is the first Canadian to receive this prestigious award.

Presented at the 2016 ABA Section of Litigation Annual Conference in Chicago, the award honours Sheikh's success as co-chair of the ABA's Securities Litigation Subcommittee for Canada. The award also recognizes his efforts in organizing the upcoming ABA National Institute on U.S.-Canadian Securities Litigation — one of North America's premier securities litigation conferences, taking place in Toronto on May 18 — as well as his contributions to the ABA's Securities Litigation Journal.

At Gowling WLG, Sheikh maintains a robust practice litigating complex corporate and commercial cases, with an emphasis on securities litigation, shareholder activism, professional liability claims and class proceedings. Prior to joining the firm, he served for four years as a prosecutor in the Enforcement Branch of the Ontario Securities Commission, where he played an integral role in several landmark cases.

A frequent speaker and mentor, Sheikh has served as co-chair of many of the most prominent professional organizations in the Canadian securities industry, including The Advocates' Society Securities Litigation Practice Group, one of the largest collectives of securities litigators in Canada. In 2011, he also co-founded the OSC Litigation Assistance Program — the first pro bono program of its kind in North America — which provides free legal advice to unrepresented respondents appearing in OSC enforcement proceedings.