The CCRL Executive

Christian Domenic Elia, PhD

Executive Director, Catholic Civil Rights League

On June 30, 2014, Christian assumed the role of Executive Director after having served on the CCRL Board since 2011. He holds four degrees, including a PhD from the University of Toronto. He currently serves as faculty at Niagara University as Senior Lecturer in the College of Education. He has an extensive background in Catholic leadership, which includes postings in educational and ministerial settings including that of Director of the Office of Catholic Youth (OCY) for the Archdiocese of Toronto from 2008 to 2011.


Philip Horgan, LL.B.

President, Catholic Civil Rights League

Phil Horgan is a Toronto lawyer specializing in commercial law. He has been on the executive of the Catholic Civil Rights League since 1995, serving as president since 2004. Through his involvement with the League, he has participated in provincial and federal Supreme Court challenges on the definition of marriage, and in defense of freedom of speech and freedom of conscience. He also testified before the House of Commons and Senate Committees on Bill C-38, which legalized same sex “marriage.”
Mr. Horgan studied economics and international relations at the University of Toronto, and earned his law degree at Queen’s University. He is a past president of the St. Thomas More Lawyers’ Guild and has been a member of the finance sub-committee of the Archdiocese of Toronto. Mr. Horgan served as the chairman of the archdiocese’s pilgrimage to Denver, Colorado for World Youth Day, 1993, and participated in the World Gathering of Families hosted by Pope John Paul II in 1994 at the Vatican.
Mr. Horgan and his wife, Christine, have five children.

Board of Directors

Edward De Vita
(British Columbia)
Desmond Sanesh
(Alberta)
Francine Lee
(Central Region)

Tanya Allen
(Ontario)

Charles Lewis
(Ontario)

Richard Bastien
(National Capital Region)

Jean Morse-Chevrier
(Quebec)

Nicholas Newman, MD
(Quebec)

Alexander MacDonald
(Atlantic Region)

Patrick Hanlon
(Atlantic Region)

Derek Nowak
(Atlantic Region)


Chaplain: Archbishop Adam Exner, O.M.I., Archbishop Emeritus of Vancouver

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The CCRL is Canada’s only lay organization devoted exclusively to combating anti-Catholic defamation and to bringing Church teaching to bear on issues of public debate.
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