Irwin served as Ontario’s Child Advocate from 2008- 2019 drawing on the strength of young people, working to fill the gap between what government, service providers and policy-makers intend, and the reality experienced by some of the most vulnerable children and youth in Ontario.
Irwin brings an extensive background as an educator, counsellor, youth worker, program manager, policy developer and child and youth advocate to the position –borrowing from the courage and hope of the young people he served to create innovative approaches for others in Ontario, Ukraine, Jamaica, Hungary and Japan.
Prior to becoming the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth, Irwin was the Manager of the Pape Adolescent Resource Centre in Toronto (PARC), an award-winning organization that supports young people as they leave child welfare care, for more than 20 years. He later served as the Director of Client Service at Central Toronto Youth Services, a children’s mental health centre.
Irwin is currently a “Fellow” with the Laidlaw Foundation of Ontario, the “Global Strategic Advisor” to Until The Last Child, an “Advisor” to the Coroner of Ontario.
Learn about all of Irwin’s work at www.theelman.com.
Irwin is a proud but admittedly often tired Husband and Father to two early teen boys who command his love and doting attention