Howard E. Staats, Q.C. (left), poses with his granddaughter and new lawyer Brenna Staats, at the Call to the Bar ceremony in Toronto June 20. At right is Mark Staats, who is Howard’s son and Brenna’s uncle. Brenna is joining the family firm - Staats Law - in Brantford. The Staats family is the first Indigenous family in Ontario with three generations of practicing lawyers.

Howard E. Staats, Q.C. (left), poses with his granddaughter and new lawyer Brenna Staats, at the Call to the Bar ceremony in Toronto June 20, along with Mark Staats, Howard’s son and Brenna’s uncle.The Staats family is the first Indigenous family in Ontario with three generations of practicing lawyers.

By Susan Tonkin

TORONTO—In a field where Indigenous people are still underrepresented, the Staats family trifecta make history in the legal field. On June 20, Brenna Staats became the 3rd generation member of her family to be called to the Bar of Ontario, making the Staats family the first Indigenous family in Ontario with three generations of practicing lawyers.

In being called to the Bar of Ontario, Brenna is joining her grandfather and uncle at the family firm, Staats Law in Six Nations of Grand River in Brantford, southwestern Ontario.

Her grandfather, Howard E. Staats, Q.C., is one of the first Indigenous lawyers in Ontario. He grew up on the Six Nations Reserve outside of Brantford and was called to the Bar in 1966. Howard was recently honoured for his 50 years of practicing law in the region.

Mark Staats, Howard’s son, and Brenna’s uncle, is also a lawyer practicing in the family firm. He was called to the Bar in 2006. He practices primarily in criminal, family, and civil litigation law, much like his father.