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Appointee Biographies

Public Service Grievance Board


Brian Smeenk has worked in labour & employment law since 1979. Starting as a Factfinder for the Education Relations Commission of Ontario, the then advised employers across the broader public sectors (both provincial and federal) & the private sector, as well as employees. As counsel, he regularly appeared before courts at all levels, and a wide variety of tribunals. He has been a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers since 2015 and recognized in "The Best Lawyers in Canada" since 2006. Brian is Past President of both the Toronto Human Resources Professionals Association and the former, tripartite Toronto Industrial Relations Association. He retired from law practice in 2020. He was appointed as Chair of the Public Service Grievance Board in January 2021 and as Vice Chair of the Ontario Labour Relations Board in May 2021. Brian is founder and president of the Merit Award Bursary Program, a foundation that for 25 years has assisted teens in the Greater Toronto area who wish to pursue post-secondary education but face challenges in doing so. He was named a Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International in 2014.


was called to the Ontario bar in 1982, she practiced labor law prior to moving to the Ontario Labor Relations Board (OLRB) in 1987. From 1989-1998 Ms. Nairn held an appointment as Vice-Chair of the OLRB. Since 1998 she has conducted a successful arbitration and mediation practice, also holding a part-time appointment to the Grievance Settlement Board. She has chaired various judicial remuneration commissions. Ms. Nairn is a member of the National Academy of Arbitrators and is past President of the Ontario Labour-Management Arbitrators’ Association.


Thomas Kuttner, K. C., has recently been a Visiting Scholar/Professor at the University of Windsor Faculty of Law, teaching labour, administrative and constitutional law. He is a former Professor at the University of New Brunswick Faculty of Law, a former member of the Federal Public Service Staff Relations Board and a former Vice-Chair of the New Brunswick Labour and Employment Board. Mr. Kuttner's community involvement has included serving as a member and musician of the Fredericton Chamber Orchestra and a member of the Atlantic Jewish Council. He holds a Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws degree from the University of Toronto.


is a full-time arbitrator and mediator with a focus on labor, employment and administrative law matters. He is on the Ontario Minister of Labor’s roster of approved grievance arbitrators (the “section 49 list”) and the Federal Minister of Labor’s list of eligible grievance and unjust dismissal adjudicators. Andrew adjudicates, mediates, and investigates workplace complaints and disputes of all kinds. On an as-needed basis. Also, Andrew acts as the Integrity Commissioner for several Ontario towns and townships. Before he came a full-time neutral, Andrew practiced labor and employment law in Ottawa for over 20 years. He received his J.D. from University of Toronto Law School in 1991, and he was called to the Ontario Bar in 1993. Andrew is a member of the Law Society of Ontario, the Canadian and Ontario Bar Associations, the Ontario Labor-management Arbitrators’ Association, the Council of Canadian Administrative Tribunals, and the Alternative Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario.


Jay Sengupta is a mediator and adjudicator who has been a neutral for over 15 years. She holds appointments with the Law Society Tribunal, the NWT Human Rights Adjudication Panel, the discipline committee of the College of Patent Agents & Trademark Agents and the Canada Industrial Relations Board (external adjudicator). Prior to launching her private mediation practice, Jay served as a full-time Vice-chair with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario where she was cross appointed to the Child and Family Services Review Board, the Custody Review Board and the Special Education Tribunal.


Henri Pallard is an arbitrator and mediator, providing professional services in both official languages. He has particular expertise in complaint and grievance procedures and alternative dispute resolution in both public and private sectors. He is on the government of Canada’s list of approved arbitrators maintained by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and was formerly on the Ontario Minister of Labour’s list. He is a member of the Ontario Labour Management Arbitrators’ Association and the ADR Institute of Ontario. A graduate of the University of Alberta and McGill University, he was called to the Ontario Bar in 1988. A former university professor, he taught courses in labour and employment law, administrative law and international human rights. Henri makes his home in Sudbury, Ontario.