PEI

Former P.E.I. premier MacLauchlan named chair of Supreme Court of Canada advisory board

Former P.E.I. premier Wade MacLauchlan has been appointed chair and member of the Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments.

Wade MacLauchlan served as premier from 2015 until Liberal Party's 2019 election loss

Former P.E.I. premier Wade MacLauchlan has been appointed to the Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press)

Former P.E.I. premier Wade MacLauchlan has been appointed chair and member of the Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments.

The former law professor and university president was the 32nd premier of Prince Edward Island, from 2015-2019. He led the Liberal Party for four years, eventually resigning after failing to win his own seat in the April 2019 election.

MacLauchlan made historic firsts in his political career, including being the first openly gay man and the first member of the Order of Canada to become premier.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced MacLauchlan's appointment as part of the process to select the next justice of the Supreme Court. That person will fill the vacancy created by the upcoming retirement of Justice Michael J. Moldaver.

The Independent Advisory Board is a "non-partisan board ... responsible for identifying candidates who are jurists of the highest calibre, functionally bilingual, and representative of the diversity of our country," the prime minister's office said. 

MacLauchlan served as premier of P.E.I. beginning in 2015, leading the Liberal Party until his resignation after the party's 2019 election loss. (Brian McInnis/CBC)

It was created in 2016 as part of a new process for judicial appointments to the Supreme Court and was chaired by former prime minister Kim Campbell.

The Supreme Court consists of nine judges, including a chief justice. Candidates must have been either a judge of a superior court or a member of at least 10 years' standing of the bar of a province or territory.

MacLauchlan's career

MacLauchlan served as P.E.I.'s premier until an early election call in April 2019, when the Liberals lost their 12-year majority government and were reduced to third-party status. MacLauchlan resigned as party leader following that loss. 

MacLauchlan, pictured here with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in March 2019, was the first person in Canada to be a member of the Order of Canada before leading a government. (Julien Lecacheur/Radio-Canada)

MacLauchlan is a president emeritus of the University of Prince Edward Island, where he served as president from 1999 to 2011.

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