LEDC (London, Ontario, Canada)

Success stories

Maria Guiomar Cabra and Edgar Marquez, Law Clerks, and Mark Lerner, Partner at Lerners

Recruiting in Interesting Places

lawyer to be recruiting for his firm, but Mark Lerner knows a good thing when he sees it. Mark met Edgar Marquez, a lawyer from Colombia who was waiting tables to help pay his bills. Edgar’s wife, Maria Guiomar Cabra was also a lawyer, and Mark was so impressed with their story, he worked with partner Matt Duffy to help secure training positions for the couple with Lerners.

Edgar, Guiomar and their young son came to Canada via the United States as refugees. In Colombia, the family, riding in a car one day, were stopped and threatened with death by guerillas who opposed their involvement in an organization working with the poor of their community. Leaving their country meant leaving their home, their money, their family and friends. After coming to London, both found jobs to pay the bills – Guiomar as a retail clerk, and the restaurant job for Edgar.

“There have been days in our journey when we thought, ‘We are safe, we are alive – that is all that is important’, but we also want to work in law and build a new life for our family,” says Guiomar.

Edgar agrees, “Every day we are thinking how lucky we are to be given the chance to work in this company. We have been given the opportunity to show what we can do.”

Kim Bean, Executive Director of Human Resources at Lerners says “Edgar and Guiomar are wonderful people who have developed the respect and friendship of their coworkers. They are good at their work as law clerks, and they are eager to learn and take on greater responsibility. They’ve also both been working hard to strengthen their language and communications skills. It’s been a learning experience for us too.”

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