Quebec's Leo Housakos named new Senate Speaker

Conservative Sen. Leo Housakos of Quebec has been named Speaker of the upper chamber, replacing Pierre Claude Nolin who died last month.
Senator Leo Housakos is the new Speaker of the Senate, a role he has fulfilled on an interim basis since Senator Pierre Claude Nolin left the post due to illness last year. Nolin died last month. (Canadian Press)

Conservative Senator Leo Housakos of Quebec has been named Speaker of the upper chamber, replacing Pierre Claude Nolin who died last month.

Housakos, 47, was unanimously elected Speaker on a temporary basis last December, to fill in as Nolin fought a rare form of cancer.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper says the appointment is backed by both the government and opposition leaders in the Senate.

The new Speaker is a businessman appointed to the Senate in 2008.

Sen. Claude Carignan, government leader in the Senate, says Housakos supports modernizing the upper house to make it more responsible and accountable.

Harper says Housakos's work on Senate committees, as well as his time filling in for Nolin, will serve him well in the chair.