The Commission has four members, three of whom are appointed for a fixed term by the Lieutenant Governor in Council in accordance with the guidelines established by Ontario's
Public Appointments Secretariat . The fourth member of the Commission is the Superintendent of Financial Services, by virtue of his position.
The current Commission members are: the Chair, Ian McSweeney; Vice-Chair, Professor Denis Boivin; Vice-Chair, Bethune Whiston; and, the Superintendent of Financial Services, Brian Mills. The Superintendent is also the Chief Executive Officer of FSCO. The Chair and Vice-Chairs of the Commission are also the Chair and Vice-Chairs of the Tribunal.
The purposes of the Commission are set out in the Financial Services Commission of Ontario Act, 1997:
- to provide regulatory services that protect the public interest and enhance public confidence in the regulated sectors;
- make recommendations to the Minister of Finance (Minister) about the regulated sectors; and
- provide resources necessary for the proper functioning of the Tribunal.
It is also charged with some statutory responsibilities:
- recommend to the Minister and the Lieutenant Governor-in-Council fees and assessments to cover regulatory costs;
- establish conflict of interest guidelines for the Commission and Tribunal members and FSCO staff; and
- publish and deliver to the Minister an annual statement of priorities of FSCO, and provide an annual report.
Mr. Ian McSweeney was appointed Chair of the Commission and the Tribunal on September 13, 2017. Ian is a retired partner of Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. At Osler, he chaired the firm’s Pension and Employee Benefits Department for many years and practiced exclusively in that area for most of his 35 plus year legal career. He is a former member of Osler’s Executive Committee and a former Chair of the firm’s Legal Professionals Committee. Ian is the past Editor of Pension Benefits Law in Ontario (Carswell) and a former Vice-Chair of the Pension Commission of Ontario’s (now FSCO) Legal Advisory Committee. Ian is also a former (founding) member of the executive of the Canadian Bar Association (Ontario) Pension and Benefits Section and former Chair and founding member of the International Pension & Employee Benefits Lawyers Association (IPEBLA). He has an honours business degree from Ivey (HBA, 1975) and obtained his law degree from The University of Western Ontario (LLB, 1979).
Professor Denis Boivin was appointed Vice-Chair of the Commission and the Tribunal on October 18, 2017. Previously, he was Vice-Chair (Acting) of the Commission and the Tribunal since December 1, 2014. Full Professor at the University of Ottawa, he teaches Insurance Law, Remedies and Torts, and has written several articles and four books on these subjects, in French and English. Professor Boivin is a graduate of the University of Ottawa (B.Soc.Sc., LL.B.) and of Yale University (LL.M.), a Fulbright Scholar, and the recipient of many awards for teaching and scholarship, including the 1999 Canadian Association of Law Teachers Award for Scholarly Writing and the 2007 University of Ottawa prize for Excellence in Education. Professor Boivin was appointed a member to the Financial Services Tribunal on June 7, 2006, having served as a special purpose member of the Tribunal from December 1, 2004.
Ms. Bethune Whiston was appointed Vice-Chair of the Commission and the Tribunal on April 11, 2018. Ms. Whiston is a Partner in the Ontario Retirement Solutions and International Practice of Morneau Shepell and consults, speaks and writes internationally on pension & benefit plan issues. With over 25 years of experience, Ms. Whiston manages Morneau Shepell’s Pension & Benefits Consulting Legal Team in Toronto and co-manages the Toronto Regulatory Practice, a large multi-specialty team of people working on over 180 pension plan wind-ups and restructurings in Canada. She is also responsible for advising the firm’s professionals and clients on a broad range of pension & benefit plan issues. Ms. Whiston was appointed a member to the Financial Services Tribunal on December 17, 2013.
Bethune is a faculty member of the Osgoode Certificate in Pension Law, a past faculty member of the Centre for Employee Benefits (Humber College), and has held leadership positions on a number of committees and councils in the industry. She is Executive Editor of the Morneau Shepell Summary of Pension Legislation in Canada, and coordinates publication of the Morneau Shepell Handbook of Canadian Pension and Benefit Plans. Ms. Whiston holds a B.A. from Western University (1983) and a J.D. from the University of Toronto (1986).
Mr. Brian Mills was appointed CEO and Superintendent of Financial Services in October 2014. He previously served as FSCO’s Deputy Superintendent, Pensions.
Mr. Mills has three decades of experience in both the private and public sectors. He began his career in the Ontario Public Service working in policy at several ministries, including the Ministry of Financial Institutions, and spent five years as Vice President of Pension Administration at the Ontario Pension Board. He was also a Managing Partner at Towers Perrin (now Towers Watson), responsible for running the firm’s pension and benefit outsourcing business operations in Canada, Europe, Australia and Latin America. Mr. Mills has an honours degree in Economics from Queen's University.