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Will Tao



Will Tao is a Canadian Immigration and Refugee Lawyer. He co-founded Heron Law Offices in 2021 and provides legal services in all areas of Canadian immigration and refugee law with a particular focus on complex refusals, appeals, and judicial reviews of international student, family class, and foreign worker-related applications. He won the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) Immigration Section Founders' Award for his accomplishments in his first five-years of practice (2020) and won the CBA Immigration's Volunteer Recognition Award (co-winner) for his work with the Section's Anti-Racism Committee (2021). He has been Best Lawyers-listed since 2017.

Will also provides strategic advice and consultation to government (including Canada's Parliamentary Committee on Citizenship and Immigration), media, educational institutions, and businesses on immigration-refugee, decolonization, and race/inclusion-related issues. Will taught Immigration Law through the UBC Certificate in Immigration: Laws, Policies and Procedures (CILPP) program.

Will is currently focused on writing and research projects to deconstruct and re-think traditional ways of doing in Canadian immigration and refugee law, applying an intersectional, race equity lens.

In his spare time, Will runs and operates his law blog Vancouver Immigration Blog (, which won a Clawbie for Best Law and Commentary Blog in Canada in 2019. Will can often be found commenting in local media and writing opinion pieces on immigration policy, race equity, and diversity topics. He is also the co-founder alongside Edris Arib of the Arenous Foundation, a non-profit advocacy organization, and a co-host of the Immlight Podcast, with LJ Dangzalan.

Will previously sat on the Chinatown Legacy Stewardship Group, the Punjabi Market Revitalization Collaborative, and is currently on the board of the hua Foundation. Will is the Former Chair of the City of Vancouver's Cultural Communities Advisory Committee and a past member of the Mayor's Working Group on Immigration and City of Vancouver's Historical Discrimination Against People of Chinese Descent Committee. Will also served as a Committee Member on the Canadian Bar Association British Columbia's Equality and Diversity Committee.

Will is a graduate of the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law (J.D.), the University of British Columbia (B.A., History and International Relations).

Of all the above, Will is most proud of being a father to his baby daughter, Esmeranda.