Simeon Toronto ’23: The Profound Impact of the Law

From having his first child to organizing an Interfaith Dinner at the Law School to running the New York City Marathon, Toronto looks back at the moments that enlivened his Law School experience.

 Hometown: Andover, Minnesota

Why the Law: As an undergraduate at Brigham Young University, Simeon Toronto studied broadcast journalism and political science. Later, while serving in Italy as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he saw how lawyers could help the unempowered. “It’s not just a dream. You can say, ‘Oh, I want to help people.’ With the law, you can.”

Favorite Law School Memory: Toronto and his wife welcomed their first child the week before Toronto’s first set of finals his 1L year. “I love looking back at law school and knowing I did law school with a son. . . . That has added such a rich balance to my life. Just to have that buffer of space is so healthy, and it’s been such a treat.” 

At Columbia Law: 2021–2022 Davis Polk Leadership Initiative fellow; organizer, 2023 Interfaith Summit; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar; Tony Patiño fellow-elect; senator, Columbia Law Student Senate; board member, Society for Immigrant and Refugee Rights; judicial externship, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York; summer associate, Kirkland & Ellis. 

After Columbia Law: Working as a litigator in the Salt Lake City office of Kirkland & Ellis, where he hopes to engage in the firm’s pro bono practice.

“The important thing about that Interfaith Dinner [which Toronto organized] was that it wasn’t just eating together—it was doing meaningful service. And I think that’s where faith and law actually intersect meaningfully. . . . You’re able to use your faith as a way to see the world in a new light to then go and change it for good.”