Supporting Canadian Athletes

The Team

Sport Solution has six Program Managers available to help Canada’s national team athletes throughout the year and one director and supervising lawyer. The current Program Managers and supervising lawyer are:

Layth H. Gafoor – Director

Layth is a proud alumnus of York University, where he received both of his degrees. He is a partner at Lucentem Sports & Entertainment in downtown Toronto. In his practice he advises on legal and business matters within the sports and entertainment industries. His practice has allowed him to serve as a counsel and agent to a variety of sporting organizations, teams, elite professional athletes and artists. He also provides legal advice and representation to clients in the music, film and television industries.

His experience in the area of sports law has allowed him to become one of Canada’s leading television and media legal commentators. He is called upon to cover a wide variety of national and international sports stories and analyze them from a Canadian legal frame work. He regularly lectures at leading universities throughout Canada and the United States in the area of comparative American and Canadian jurisprudence as it relates to sports and entertainment matters.

Layth is the Director of the Sport Solution Legal Clinic at the University of Western Ontario Faculty of Law, where he is also an adjunct faculty member teaching sport law. He also holds seats on the Sports Lawyers Association (SLA) Board of Directors and the York University Alumni Association Board.

Our Program Managers

James Sifakis

James is a third-year student at Western Law. He graduated with distinction from Western’s Honours Finance specialization as part of the BMOS program. James has been involved in competitive sports from an early age, competing in both football and hockey. In 2009, he represented Team Canada at the Junior World Football Championships in Canton, Ohio winning silver. In January 2010, James was selected to the IFAF World Select Team to play against Team USA as part of the International Bowl in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Having joined the Western Mustangs in 2011, James represented the school for five seasons, making three appearances in the Yates Cup, winning the trophy in 2013. Off the field, James participated in school visits and football camps, teaching basic drills to students and young players, as well as giving anti-bullying speeches. Prior to attending Western Law, James’ work experience has ranged from sales clerk at a sporting goods store to logistics and client service in the hospitality industry.

James is eager to continue his support of Canadian athletes throughout his third year at Sport Solution Legal Clinic. This is an unparalleled opportunity to give back to the athletic community while continuing his legal studies.

 

Rachel Islam

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Rachel is a third year law student at Western. She earned a degree in Political Science with a concentration in Pre-law and graduated Magna Cum Laude honours from Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU). She was recruited to MTSU on a full athletic scholarship for track and cross country running. During her time as an NCAA Division I student-athlete, she was a Conference finalist six times, and a Conference Champion with her relay team in 2013. Additionally, her cross country team earned Academic All-American honours in 2014. Rachel served as a student-athlete leader and ambassador during her undergraduate years. She also had the opportunity to work as an intern on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. for a Congressman during the summer of 2013.

Rachel’s sports background also included elite participation in soccer and figure skating, as well as being an accomplished dancer. Rachel remains active by running and partaking in soccer intramurals. She also is the co-chair for the Western Law Games team.

Rachel has been involved for two years with the Sport Solution Legal Clinic and is motivated to remain involved with Sport Solution while maintaining its standards of excellence in serving and supporting Canadian athletes (and run-on sentences).

Connor Allison

Connor is a second year student at Western Law. Prior to law school, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree with an Honours Specialization in Kinesiology as well as a Master’s degree in Sport Management and Leadership, both from Western University.  His graduate research focused on executive leadership development in sport.  As a component of the Master’s degree, Connor completed a full-term internship with the Canadian Olympic Committee in Montreal. At Western Law, Connor is the Chair of the Sports Committee, holds an executive position on the Wellness Committee and the Entertainment and Sports Law Association, and is a class representative on the Student Legal Society.

Connor’s sport background includes elite participation in hockey and lacrosse.  While in undergrad, he joined the London Nationals Junior Hockey Club, representing the team for two seasons, winning two conference championships and the organization’s first Sutherland Cup.  After finishing hockey, Connor gained valuable work experience with the Western Sport and Recreation Services. There he was responsible for the coordination of game-day operations for the Western Mustang varsity athletic teams/clubs.

The Sport Solution Legal Clinic is an incredible opportunity to support and empower Canada’s high performance athletes, and Connor is excited to serve their legal needs.

 

Umar Khan

Umar is currently in his 2nd year of the JD program at Western. He graduated from York University with both a B.A. in Law and Society and an M.A. in Political Science. During his first year at Western Law, Umar was a Caseworker with the Sport Solution Clinic and a Student Ambassador. He was also awarded the Malcolm J. McKinnon award. Prior to attending Western Law, Umar spent 12 years as a competitive track and field athlete, specializing in the shot put. He is a 15-time Provincial medalist, and 4-time National medalist. He was also a member of the CIS Men’s National Championship Team. In his graduating year, he was awarded the Charles Saundercook Memorial Trophy.

Umar is still heavily involved in the track and field community. He regularly coaches, officiates, and conducts clinics so that others may benefit and gain from his knowledge. In 2015, he worked for the CBC at the Toronto Pan Am/Parapan Am Games as a media spotter stationed at the throwing events.

Umar is excited to support athletes through the Sport Solution Legal Clinic. This is a unique and unparalleled opportunity to combine his passion for sports with his legal studies.

 

Claudia Warner-Romano

Claudia is a second year student at Western Law. She recently earned a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Toronto (UofT). She also holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours from Trent University, as well as a Master of Arts in History (also from UofT). Prior to joining Western Law’s Class of 2019, Claudia worked in various researcher and information specialist roles in both the academic library and not-for-profit settings.

In her first year as a law student, she worked as a caseworker for the Sport Solution Clinic and sees the experience as one of the highlights of her law school career thus far. Moving into the role of case manager, Claudia is excited to continue to draw upon the skills her research background has afforded her so as to serve the legal needs of Canadian athletes.

In recognizing the pivotal role the Clinic plays in advocating on behalf of Canada’s athletes, Claudia is motivated to continue to uphold the standards of excellence Sport Solution has become synonymous.

 

 

Lucy Wu

Lucy is a 2nd year law student at Western. She earned a double major in Forensic Science and Biology from the University of Toronto. During her last year of undergraduate studies, Lucy completed an internship with Halton Regional Police Service. Her research led to the first purchase of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for the division. She subsequently presented her research at the annual Toronto Police Education Conference.

Lucy was involved in competitive swimming at a high level with Scarborough Swim Club. She then went on to race with the University of Toronto Mississauga Masters Swim Club during her undergraduate years. She has ten years of combined racing and coaching experience, working with children and adult alike.

Lucy joined Sport Solution in 2016 as a 1L Caseworker. She appreciates the opportunity she has been given and is looking forward to continuing to work with the Clinic in her new role.

 


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