Giselle Basanta on becoming one of only a few Black females leading a legal department in Canada

By Julius Melnitzer | May 18, 2023

There are very few Black females leading legal departments in Canada. Giselle Basanta, a latecomer to the law after the better part of two decades as a public servant, is one of them. She is only aware of four others.

When George Brown College went looking for a dynamic black leader as its first general legal counsel in 2022, Basanta’s background in academics made her the complete package.

“And because GBC was looking to establish a department, it really helped that I had an institutional background,” she said.

Basanta’s success didn’t come easily, preceded – as is often the case when life deals its cards – by a challenging period in which the pandemic played a significant role. MORE . . .

Julius Melnitzer is a Toronto-based legal affairs writer, ghostwriter, writing coach and media trainer. Readers can reach him at [email protected] or


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