Martin Teplitsky (Marty) was born in Toronto in 1941. He attended the University of Toronto Law School graduating in 1964 and was called to the Ontario bar in 1966. Following Marty’s call to the bar he began a career that would see him become an unparalleled litigator, a professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, a legal scholar, a community leader, and one of Canada’s most respected mediator-arbitrators.
Marty continued to work to within days of his passing on July 14, 2016. In 1980 Marty and Bob Colson founded the firm today known as Teplitsky Colson LLP. Over the years Marty hand-picked others to join his team at Teplitsky Colson LLP to pursue his approach to litigation and dispute resolution characterized by a blend of the aggressive, reasonable, and practical.
Chemistry and creativeness were hallmarks to Marty’s choices. He believed in people; letting individuals be themselves as a way to foster, not stifle, creativity. Marty’s insight into people was one of his greatest strengths, evident not only in his own personal and professional accomplishments, his approach to litigation and solving clients issues, but also in the continued growth and success of the law firm he helped create.
Marty was a pillar in the legal community and the Toronto community at large. Together with a refined intellect, and a thirst for and ability to learn, he had a generosity of spirit second to none. He was a philanthropist who believed that each of us has a responsibility to help others in a meaningful way. Perhaps his greatest source of personal pride resulted from his work in founding the Lawyers Feed the Hungry program at the Law Society of Upper Canada together with his wife, the Honourable Justice Nancy Backhouse.
For his service to both the legal profession and general public, Marty has been honoured with many distinguished awards, including the University of Toronto’s Bora Laskin Award, the Law Foundation’s Guthrie Award for excellence and contributions to access to justice, the ORT Toronto Hero Award for his generosity and work with Lawyer’s Feed the Hungry, the Order of Ontario, the Law Society Medal and two honorary doctorates, the latest from the Law Society of Upper Canada.
Just prior to his passing Marty celebrated the 50th anniversary of his call to the bar and became a life member of the Law Society, a milestone that recognizes his long and distinguished career at the Bar.