Meet Our Legal Team


David J. Protomanni

Criminal Lawyer
Managing Partner

Born and raised in Timmins, Ontario, David’s path to becoming a trial lawyer was forged when he began playing guitar as a young boy. His passion for performance carried him through his undergrad and Master’s, earning him two degrees in music.

His love of people and performing guided him to the University of Ottawa where he earned a Juris Doctor degree, followed by his Call to the Ontario Bar. Never one for desk jobs, David thrives in a courtroom setting where his passion and advocacy skills truly shine. He consistently perseveres for each and every client, achieving the best results possible. David restricts his personal practice strictly to criminal defence. He can be found meeting clients on a weekly basis at the Niagara Detention Centre. David has argued cases before the Ontario Court of Justice and the Superior Court of Justice. He is a member of the Legal Aid Panel for Criminal Law, Gladue as well as the panel for “ESM” or Extremely Serious Matters.

David volunteers as a coach and judge with the Ontario Justice Education Network in the Competitive Mock Trial tournaments for local high schools. David also serves as a criminal law mentor to lawyers recently called to the Ontario Bar. An avid reader and fan of Elon Musk, David enjoys reading about physics and astronomy, writing music, and playing his guitar, cooking, and spending time with his 2 Labrador Retrievers.

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Michael R. Peterson

Senior Criminal Lawyer

Michael was born and raised in St. Catharines but has lived in other parts of the country, namely British Columbia, and Saskatchewan where he earned his law degree in 2003.  Prior to earning his law degree, Michael owned and operated a successful business in marketing and document design. As a student of criminology, he became interested in the interaction between citizens and the law, and how citizens are governed. This interest prompted him to become involved in neighbourhood advocacy efforts. Prior to being called to the bar in the province of Ontario in 2004, Michael worked for the Attorney General of Ontario, the Ombudsman of Saskatchewan, and published with the Law Courts Education Society of British Columbia.


Prior to joining Protomanni & Associates, Michael worked as criminal defence lawyer both as a sole practitioner, and while at a law firm. His experience includes serving as a writer/researcher, a per diem provincial Prosecutor, and, Duty Counsel for Legal Aid Ontario.


As senior defence counsel, he has appeared at all levels of court, including the Ontario Court of Appeal, and represented clients at every stage of the criminal and quasi-criminal process. From bail to pleas of responsibility, to preliminary enquiries, to trials and beyond, including the “Dangerous Offender” application process under the Criminal Code of Canada, Michael’s clients have always received the highest level of attention and care.


As a professional, Michael has devoted himself to representing individuals and organized groups in the legal determination of their conflicts with the law.


At Protomanni & Associates, Michael’s practice is restricted to criminal defence. In addition to trial advocacy, he has the knowledge and experience to represent individuals who wish to appeal their criminal conviction, and is one of the few lawyers in the region who maintains an appellate practice.


Michael works alongside David, defending some of the most serious criminal charges for clients throughout the Niagara region and beyond.

St. Catharines Litigation Lawyer

Brian Simpson

Senior Litigation Lawyer

After being called to the Bar in 1996, Brian bravely started his own general practice, earning the building blocks to understanding a wide range of legal issues. Over time, he began specializing in advocacy in the criminal, civil and administrative tribunals.  He has appeared in all levels of Court in Ontario and numerous Tribunals.

Prior to Brian becoming a lawyer, he earned his business degree (BBA hons. Wilfrid Laurier U.) and  started on the ground floor in a unionized environment, working his way up to  management and then strategic and operations planning. He earned his MBA at the University of Toronto along the way.


This business background allowed Brian to accept new challenges in the entertainment and entrepreneurial space becoming a successful CEO of several companies. Brian is still very interested in helping entrepreneurs start up or scale up. He has been involved in start-ups in film & television production, aggregates, cannabis licencing, and high-tech speech equipment.


Brian has earned further credentials in Alternative Dispute Resolution. He is of the belief that litigation should be the last resort and only in the clearest of cases. Brian can provide facilitative and evaluative mediation services, across a broad spectrum of matters, assisting parties to come to the best decision between themselves, and for themselves, in a timely and cost-effective manner.


Brian is further trained in Workplace Investigations.  Workplaces should be respectful and positive. Allegations of discrimination, harassment, violence and statutory breaches do occur. As a workplace investigator, combined with his litigation experience,  Brian provides fair and thorough investigations into such matters.


Brian’s legal and business experiences have earned him substantial career capital. He has a reputation of approachability, empathy, and creativity. He can transform challenging multidimensional problems into solutions for you.


At Protomanni & Associates, Brian maintains a civil litigation and mediation practice.

When not advocating for his clients, Brian volunteers a great deal of his time giving back to the community by serving on Boards and volunteering with various organizations.

Senior Family Lawyer

Patricia Novomestsky

Senior Family Lawyer

Patricia is an experienced family lawyer, practicing exclusively in the areas of family law and child protection matters, for the past sixteen years. She regularly advises clients on issues related to divorce, decision making responsibility and parenting/contact time, spousal and child support, division of property, the intersection of family law and business, separation agreements, marriage/cohabitation contracts, and cross-border family law issues.


Patricia was born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a double major in Criminology and Political Science, and a minor in Philosophy with distinction. In 2005, Patricia graduated from the University of Windsor School of Law. During her time at law school, Patricia was actively involved with the University of Windsor Legal Aid Clinic.


Patricia has appeared before all levels of court in Ontario, including the Court of Appeal. She has successfully represented clients in mediation and arbitration proceedings.


Patricia is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Ontario Bar Association, and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.


When not representing her family law clients, Patricia enjoys spending time with her two daughters, spinning, and travel.

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Jack Blozowski

Family & Civil Lawyer

Born and raised in Burlington, Jack is a deeply disciplined individual who has maintained a passion for helping his clients to achieve justice. Jack’s commitment to justice stems from his experiences as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, as well his volunteer work through: Scouts Canada, Tourism Burlington, and Outlaw (an organization dedicated to promoting diversity in the legal profession).  Although Jack is excited to assist his clients in a wide range of civil disputes, he holds a particular passion for representing members of marginalized groups in cases of harassment and discrimination.

His personal discipline and commitment to excellence, which he utilizes in achieving these goals, is grounded in his time as both a Taekwondo student and instructor. During his high school years, Jack committed many hours to hone and improve his skills as a martial artist, ultimately leading to his earning a Second Degree Black Belt and becoming a Taekwondo instructor. He then worked as an instructor throughout his time at Ryerson University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree (with Honours) in Criminology, minoring in Business Law. Jack then earned his Juris Doctor Degree from the University of Western Ontario, where he committed himself to the full-time study and practice of law. At Protomanni & Associates, Jack practices in the areas of civil litigation, estate litigation and family law. In his spare time, Jack enjoys reading, hiking, biking, and playing the odd video game.


William Hebert-Vendramini


Born and raised in Montreal, Quebec, William earned a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a concentration in Criminology, Law, and Social Policy at Bishop’s University. While at Bishop’s, William became involved with awareness campaigns pertaining to prison conditions and criminal justice reform. During this time, William also became involved as a summer intern with the Hawai’i Innocence Project, an organization that attempts to exonerate wrongfully convicted individuals. Inspired by his undergraduate experiences, William continued his legal education and earned his Juris Doctorate degree from Queen’s University. At Queen’s University, William’s desire to help those in need led him to becoming a student caseworker at Queen’s Legal Aid. 

As a caseworker, William learned to advocate on behalf of vulnerable individuals and navigate the challenges of representing clients with mental or physical health issues. The time William spent representing a diverse set of clients at Queen’s Legal Aid also taught him the importance of an individualized approach to representation that caters to the unique needs of each person. To raise awareness in the community for resources available to individuals who experienced psychological or physical injuries as a result of criminal acts, William created presentations and hosted discussions at organizations specializing in counselling services for survivors of partner violence. William’s experience representing student clients in tenancy disputes at Queen’s Legal Aid also inspired him to spearhead a “Tenant’s Rights Poster Campaign”, which utilized a series of posters displayed throughout the Queen’s University campus that highlighted the obligations and responsibilities of landlords towards their tenant’s. William joins Protomanni & Associates as a Student-at-Law and will be assisting David and Michael in criminal matters. 

During his undergraduate degree, William enjoyed his time on the varsity rugby team, but now restricts himself only to non-contact recreational sports. When he isn’t at the office, William might be playing touch-rugby with friends, working out, or playing chess.

Leah Fitzpatrick

Leah Fitzpatrick


Leah was born in Calgary, Alberta, moving to Niagara at the age of 10.  After graduating high school, Leah studied social work and criminology at Niagara College. Leah later obtained her paralegal license and has worked in many different legal areas.

Leah has a very diverse skillset from managing a large corporate franchise restaurant, working in the funeral industry for over thirteen years, working as a provincial prosecutor as well as managing several  law offices.

At Protomanni & Associates, Leah has her hand in every avenue of the practice. From greeting and updating clients on the phone, to appearing in both criminal and family court, to assisting all of the firm’s lawyers with daily tasks, Leah is a very valuable member of the firm who keeps everything running smoothly.

Leah firmly believes that coffee is the elixir of life and finds her sanity as an avid runner and working out.

Erica Killik-Randall

Erica Killik-Randall

Law Clerk

Erica was born and raised in Hamilton and moved to Niagara Falls in 2012. Learning about her love for law after being called for jury duty on her 18th birthday, Erica decided that law was the career for her. Since graduating Mohawk College in 2004, Erica has continued working as a law clerk and has worked in various areas of law and eventually narrowing down her expertise to family law, exclusively. Erica’s passion for law has now continued over 18 years. In addition to law, Erica understands and has assisted with the dynamics of running a business including the bookkeeping and ongoing management.


At Protomanni & Associates, Erica lends her expertise to all of Ms. Novomestsky’s matters, making sure her clients are always advised of how their matter is proceeding.


In her spare time, Erica spends time with family and building LEGO sets.