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Fundy Royal MP Rob Moore, who was first elected in 2004, was named as the minister of state for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency on Monday. (ACOA)

A veteran MP from New Brunswick is now in a senior position to influence federal policy throughout Atlantic Canada.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper appointed Fundy Royal MP Rob Moore as minister of state for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and regional minister for New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Moore was among a group of new ministers named to Harper's cabinet on Monday.

As the ACOA minister, Moore will have a role in federal government spending decisions around Atlantic Canada.

He's also been given the status of regional minister for New Brunswick leapfrogging over the more experienced Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt, who remained in his portfolio.

Regional ministers exert influence over major political decisions, including federal appointments.

Moore also has regional minister status for Newfoundland and Labrador because the Conservatives failed to win any seats in the province in the last federal election.

The combination of jobs will make the 39-year-old MP one of the most important politicians in Atlantic Canada.

Fredericton MP Keith Ashfield had asked Harper to keep him out of cabinet so he could focus on his fight with cancer.

P.E.I.’s Gail Shea will take over from Ashfield as the federal fisheries minister.

Harper unveiled his new cabinet on Monday afternoon in Ottawa.

Moore’s political history

Moore briefly served as the minister of state for small business from 2010 until the 2011 election.

Moore comes from the Canadian Alliance wing of the federal Conservative party. He first ran for the Canadian Alliance in 2000, when he was 26 years old.

He lost to Fundy Royal Progressive Conservative MP John Herron, who later defected to the Liberals.

In 2004, Moore won the riding for the newly-merged Conservatives and he's held the seat ever since.

In the 2011 election, Moore won 58 per cent of the vote in the largely rural riding in southern New Brunswick.

Moore is the son of a Pentecostal minister and spent part of his childhood in the United States.

He has a business degree and a law degree from the University of New Brunswick.