“I have been very lucky to witness many cases of perseverance.”
For most, the work of a criminal defense lawyer will only ever be seen through the lens of primetime television. For Brandon Crawford, it wasn’t the action and drama of a daytime soap’s criminal court that led him to a career in the field. Instead, it was a genuine passion for helping people. Today, as a partner at Edelson Foord Law, one of Ottawa’s most prominent criminal defense offices, Brandon regularly helps clients during some of the worst moments of their lives.
Brandon’s journey to criminal law was not easy, but it was straightforward. He remembers committing to the career path as early as 10 years old.
Brandon went on to complete his undergraduate degree in criminology, and attended both Michigan State’s College of Law and the University of Ottawa for law school. It was in his last year of law school that he met James Foord under a student-proposed internship. James would become his mentor, and Brandon eventually joined his law firm as an associate. In 2019, James and Brandon became partners at Foord and Crawford for three years. “I have been beyond fortunate to have been mentored by a lawyer, who is so well respected,” Brandon reflects. “He remains an example of how this job should be done, both in court and behind the scenes.”
Recently, Foord and Crawford has merged with Edelson Barristers, headed by Michael Edelson, a preeminent criminal defense lawyer in Ottawa for 40 years. Edelson, his partner Tony Paciocco, Foord and Crawford now work with an ambitious and hardworking group of associates and office staff. “ The firm has acted in some of the most high-profile cases in Ontario. Our firm has a breadth of talent, with diverse experiences––the benefits of which are already having an impact on our clients, which is ultimately by far the most important thing.”
Brandon’s commitment to helping others has remained wholly intact throughout his career thus far, and remains the central reason for his success. “Not to sound cliche with this answer, but it’s extremely meaningful to be able to help people and to see the effects of my help,” he explains. “Clients often come to us in a situation that is one of the worst they have ever experienced––if not the worst. Sometimes it’s because they’ve made a mistake, many times they have been wrongly accused, or perhaps something occurred where their rights were violated. I have been very lucky to witness many cases of perseverance. Often, you develop a personal connection with the client, and the opportunity to assist them in these difficult times of need is very fulfilling work. Defense lawyers in general serve an important societal function.” Outside of his work with the firm, Brandon teaches Trial Advocacy at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law.
Read more about Brandon and the team at Edelson Foord Law at:
Photography by Sean Sisk