Who We Are




Paul Eluchok, BA, LLB

University Legal Counsel

Since January 2018, Paul Eluchok has acted as Legal Counsel at Western, advising the University on a broad range of issues, including procurement, IP, litigation, governance, student affairs and corporate matters. From 2013-2017, Paul worked in the University Secretariat's Office on a variety of legal, privacy and access to information matters.

Prior to working at Western, Paul worked at a local law firm practicing in real estate, estates, and corporate/commercial law. He is a member of the Canadian Association of University Solicitors, the National Association of College and University Attorneys, and the COU Legal Counsel group.

Paul received his BA from Western and his law degree from Queen's University and was called to the Ontario bar in 2006. 



Ben Leschied, BA, LLB, LLM

Associate University Legal Counsel (Contracts)

Ben joined the Office of the University Legal Counsel in July 2021. His practice focuses on a wide-range and variety of contracts. He is also on the Technology Risk Assessment Committee.

Prior to joining Western, Ben worked for 8 years as in-house legal counsel for publicly funded institutions. He is currently a member of the Canadian Association of University Solicitors and the National Association of College and University Attorneys.

Ben is a graduate of King’s College at the University of Western Ontario. He completed an LL.B. at Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London, and an LL.M. at the University of Toronto. He was called to the bar in 2013.




Emely Meléndez Rodríguez, BA, Hons, JD, LL.L

Associate University Legal Counsel (Privacy)

Emely Melendez is Western’s Privacy Officer since October 2021. Much of Emely’s experience has been working in in-house roles, which has allowed her to advise on all these areas and which has allowed her to see the bigger picture when working with clients in high-stakes negotiations or sensitive files. Prior to joining Western, Emely has practiced in several areas, including immigration and refugee protection law, employment law, health law, military law, healthcare law and corporate/commercial law.

Emely graduated from Western in 2011 with an Honors Specialization in International Relations and Major in French Language and Literature. During her time at Western, Emely also attended the Université de Tours in Tours, France as part of an international exchange and was regularly part of the honour roll. Emely graduated from the University of Ottawa’s Programme de droit canadien in 2015, a bi-jural program in common law and civil law. She was called to the Bar of Ontario in 2018.

Emely has also been a member of the Royal Canadian Navy since 2007. Serving the military has allowed Emely to visit many parts of Canada and has made her well-versed in matters touching on federal level human resources, financial management, grievance management, fairness investigation, and public affairs. In 2020, she was awarded her Canadian Decoration for Meritorious service. 


Amy Van Damme

Legal Assistant

Amy joined Western University in August 2018. In addition to assisting the University Legal Counsel team, her main duties include facilitating the implementation of student placement affiliation agreements for multiple Schools across campus, handling legal invoices for Western, and processing third-party requests for student academic files. Amy also provided administrative assistance to the Provost’s Ad Hoc Committee that developed and implemented Western’s Freedom of Expression Policy in Fall 2018. Since January 2019, Amy has also acted as Administrative Assistant to Western’s Technology Risk Assessment (TRA) Committee.
Prior to joining Western, Amy worked for 7 years at a private law firm, primarily in the area of Plaintiff Personal Injury Law (both Tort and SABS). She also worked in the areas of Bankruptcy/Insolvency and Commercial Litigation, and was appointed to maintain the firm’s Indian Residential School IAP claim files. Amy obtained her Diploma in the Law Clerk program from Fanshawe College in 2012.