Mandate and members

What is the mandate of the Advisory Board?

The Advisory Board is an independent and non-partisan body whose mandate is to provide non-binding, merit-based recommendations to the Prime Minister on Senate appointments. It was established on January 19, 2016 and consists of three permanent federal members and two members from each of the provinces or territories where a vacancy is to be filled‍. The Advisory Board is chaired by one of the federal members and is supported by the Privy Council Office. 

Terms of Reference for the Advisory Board

What is the role of the Advisory Board for Senate Appointments?

An open application process has been established to allow Canadians to apply for appointment to the Senate.

The Advisory Board assesses applications based on public, merit-based criteria, in order to identify Canadians who would make a significant contribution to the work of the Senate. The criteria helps to ensure a high standard of integrity, collaboration, and non-partisanship in the Senate.

The Advisory Board provides a short-list of five names for each vacancy to the Prime Minister for his consideration, in accordance with their Terms of Reference.

How many members sit on the Advisory Board?

The Advisory Board has five members: a federal Chair, two other federal members and two ad hoc provincial or territorial members for the province or territory where a vacancy is being filled.

Who are the current federal members of the Advisory Board?

  • Huguette Labelle (Chair)

    Huguette Labelle holds a PhD (education) degree from the University of Ottawa, has honorary degrees from twelve Canadian universities, and from the University of Notre Dame, United States. She is a Companion of the Order of Canada. In addition, she is a recipient of the Order of Ontario, the Vanier Medal of the Institute of Public Administration of Canada, the Outstanding Achievement Award of the Public Service of Canada, the McGill University Management Achievement Award and the Francophonie’s Ordre de la Pléiade.

    Ms. Labelle is Emeritus Governor of the University of Ottawa, and was Chancellor of the University of Ottawa from 1994 to 2012. She is currently Vice-Chair of the Rideau Hall Foundation Board, Vice-Chair of the International Senior Advisory Board of the International Anti-Corruption Academy, Chair of the International Anti-Corruption Conference Council, member of the Board of the Global Centre for Pluralism, Board member of Global Financial Integrity, Board member of the Aga Khan Museum, member of the Advisory Committee of the Order of Ontario and Chair of the Selection Committee for Master's Scholarships on Sustainable Energy Development. Ms. Labelle is also a member of the Advisory Group to the Secretary General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on Integrity and Anti-Corruption, the Natural Resources and Energy Leadership Council and the Advisory Board of RESOLVE, and the University of Ottawa Campaign Cabinet. She is also a former Chair of Transparency International, as well as a former Board member of UN Global Compact.

    Ms. Labelle also served for a period of nineteen years as Deputy Minister of different Canadian Government departments including Secretary of State, Transport Canada, the Public Service Commission and the Canadian International Development Agency.

  • Melissa Blake

    Melissa Blake was elected to six consecutive terms, beginning in 1998, for the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. She was first elected as mayor in October 2004 and concluded her final term in 2017.

    Being the top elected official for one of Canada's largest municipalities brought with it tremendous challenges and opportunities. Wood Buffalo is the heart of Canada's energy industry and is often subject to global scrutiny. When the 2016 Horse River Wildfire forced the evacuation of 88, 000 people, Mayor Blake’s strength and dedication earned the hearts and minds of Albertans, Canadians and the world. In Wood Buffalo, she worked hard to get her citizens "home".

    Ms. Blake has served on numerous committees in addition to her regular council duties, including those related to development, protective services, community services and affordable housing. She has also served on two provincial associations.

    Ms. Blake brought a range of experience including public affairs, materials & services and human resources to elected service from her corporate career. She holds a Bachelor of Administration degree from Athabasca University and has received numerous awards for her work.

    She resides permanently in Fort McMurray, Alberta with her husband and two young sons.

  • François Rolland

    The Honourable François Rolland was appointed a Superior Court of Quebec justice in 1996 and Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Quebec in 2004, a position he held until his retirement in 2015.

    Following his retirement, Mr. Rolland was appointed by the Quebec government as Director of the Voluntary Reimbursement Program serving until the program ended in November 2017. He also presides over private mediation and arbitration mandates, involving mostly commercial matters, and including large multijurisdictional class actions.

    He is a member of the Canadian Bar Association (CBA), a founding member and former chair of the Judges' Forum of the CBA and a past president of the CBA’s Quebec Branch and of the Young Bar of Montreal. Mr. Rolland was awarded the Louis St-Laurent award for his exceptional contribution to the CBA and the CBA’s Centennial Medal.

    A member of the Board of the Canadian Forum on Civil Justice, Mr. Rolland is also a member of the International Insolvency institute, Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Centre d’accès à l’information juridique, Chair of the Board of Directors of Éducaloi and a Commissioner of Ethics for the Barreau du Québec and the Chambre des notaires. He also taught ethics at the National Judicial Institute for 10 years.

    The Honourable François Rolland graduated from University of Montreal in 1974 and was called to the Quebec Bar in 1975. Before his appointment as a judge, he was a partner at the law firm Fasken Martineau, practising mainly in the field of commercial and civil litigation.

Who are the current provincial or territorial members of the Advisory Board?

Alberta

  • Both positions are currently vacant

British Columbia

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Manitoba

  • Both positions are currently vacant

New Brunswick

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Newfoundland and Labrador

  • Susan Dyer Knight

    Socio-cultural entrepreneur Susan Knight is a champion of the intrinsic value of people singing together. A choral conductor and music educator of international repute, her principal current focus is advocating the power of social singing as an engine for individual human health/enrichment and collectively for the creation of an empathic community.

    Dr. Knight holds bachelor degrees in music/music education (Memorial University), a master of arts, music education (University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis) and a Ph.D. (University of London).

    She is also Chancellor of Memorial University and Visiting Researcher, International Music Education Research Centre, UCL Institute of Education at University of London. She has given presentations at national and international conferences and her work has been published in professional journals, conference proceedings and musical editions.

    Founder/Chair of Growing the Voices: Festival 500, a movement to develop access to and diverse opportunities for singing across the lifespan, Dr. Knight also founded Shallaway Youth Choir (1992) and Festival 500 (1997), and has an extensive discography and filmography.

    A consultant, author, producer, speaker and arts advocate, she is active in governance nationally and internationally. Dr. Knight has produced a canon of choral work chiefly exploring place, empathic community, ecology and change. She has commissioned published, recorded and/or broadcast works by composers, locally and globally. Her principal focus as a researcher is on adult singing recovery/discovery.

    Dr. Knight holds an honorary LLD (Memorial University, 2005) and was invested in the Orders of Canada (2004) and of Newfoundland and Labrador (2005).

  • James Igloliorte

    James Igloliorte of Hopedale, Newfoundland and Labrador, is a retired provincial court judge. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Education from Memorial University, Newfoundland, in 1974 and started his career as a teacher on the west coast of Newfoundland.

    Appointed first as a lay magistrate in 1980, Mr. Igloliorte subsequently took responsibility of the Labrador court and circuit system and completed law school at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1985. He then returned to take up duties in Happy Valley-Goose Bay as a circuit judge, a position he held for the majority of his career. Mr. Igloliorte was a 1999 National Aboriginal Achievement Award recipient in the category of Law and Justice. He stepped down from the bench in 2004.

    In addition to his impressive legal career, Mr. Igloliorte is a past Labrador Director with the Innu Healing Foundation and was a commissioner with the Royal Commission on Renewing and Strengthening Our Place in Canada. He has also worked as Newfoundland and Labrador's child and youth advocate and was commissioner of the Qikiqtani Truth Commission in Nunavut.

    Mr. Igloliorte and his wife live in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, and have four children and five grandchildren.

Northwest Territories

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Nova Scotia

  • Jennifer Gillivan

    Jennifer Gillivan is President and CEO of the IWK Foundation, which raises funds to help the IWK Health Centre provide critical and specialized care to women, children, youth and families throughout the Maritime Provinces.

    Ms. Gillivan has an extensive background in philanthropy, partnerships, public speaking, strategy, marketing and leadership. Born and educated in Dublin, Ireland, she immigrated to Canada in 1982. Prior to joining the IWK Foundation, Ms. Gillivan worked with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for 14 years, most recently as Director of Partnerships, Communications, Marketing and Brand for the CBC across Canada.

    She is an active member of her community, serving on the boards of Canada Children’s Hospital Foundations and the Children’s Miracle Network. She is also the Atlantic Ambassador for Women Get On Board. In addition, she is an active member of the Rotman School of Business “Judy Project” Advisory Board and enjoys motivational speaking. She has also completed the Ivey School of Business KPMG Community Shift program.

    Ms. Gillivan has received numerous awards. In 2017, for instance, she received the RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrant award, the Top 25 Maritime Immigrant award and the Halifax Chamber of Commerce Business Person of the Year. She also obtained her Institute of Corporate Directors designation in 2017 and she was featured in Canada 150 Women, published in November 2017 and was presented with the Atlantic Business Magazine Top 50 CEO Award for 2014, 2015 and 2017.

  • Ramona Lumpkin

    Dr. Ramona Lumpkin has held important academic and administrative leadership positions at several universities in Canada and the United States, including Principal of Huron University College and Vice-President Academic and Provost of Royal Roads University in Victoria. In 2010, she joined Mount Saint Vincent University as the President and Vice-Chancellor. She occupied that position until 2017.

    Throughout her career, Dr. Lumpkin has been actively engaged in women’s studies, in advocacy on behalf of women’s issues, in promoting the role of women in higher education and in enhancing access to education for Aboriginal learners.

    In 2014, Dr. Lumpkin was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in recognition of her leadership in post-secondary education, her promotion of community-based learning initiatives and her support for the advancement of women. In October 2017, she received the Governor General’s Persons Case Award for her advocacy on behalf of women’s rights.

    She holds a Ph.D in English Literature from the University of Kentucky and is a former Fulbright Scholar to England.

    Dr. Lumpkin is currently Chair of Engage Nova Scotia and a member of several boards such as: Women Active Nova Scotia; Frank H. Sobey Fund for Excellence in Business Education; and, Canadian Women’s Foundation. She is also a member of the YWCA Halifax Advisory Council on the Economic Empowerment of Women and of the Executive of the International Women’s Forum (IWF), Atlantic Region.

Nunavut

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Ontario

  • Dawn Lavell Harvard

    Dr. Dawn Lavell Harvard, Ph.D, has since 2016 served as the Director, First Peoples House of Learning, at Trent University. Prior to taking on this role, she was President of the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC), having previously been Vice-President of NWAC for almost three years.

    A proud member of the Wikwemikong First Nation on Manitoulin Island, Dr. Lavell Harvard was the first Aboriginal Trudeau Scholar and has worked for 25 years to advance the rights of Aboriginal women and their families in Ontario.

    Since joining the Board of the Ontario Native Women’s Association as a youth director in 1994, Dr. Lavell Harvard has been working toward the empowerment of Aboriginal women and their families. The mother of three girls, she was co-editor of the original volume on Indigenous Mothering, Until Our Hearts Are on the Ground: Aboriginal Mothering, Oppression, Resistance and Rebirth. She has since published Mothers of the Nations, co-edited with Kim Anderson, as well as Forever Loved: Exposing the Hidden Crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls in Canada, co-edited with Jennifer Brant.

    In 2018, Dr. Lavell Harvard was awarded the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers in recognition to her contributions to her community.

    Dr. Lavell Harvard has followed in the footsteps of her mother Jeannette Corbiere Lavell, a noted advocate for Indigenous women’s rights. Dr. Lavell Harvard holds a Ph.D in Education from the University of Ottawa, focusing on the processes necessary to foster academic success for Indigenous students, and a Honourary Ph.D from Nipissing University in recognition of her work for the restoration of the Riggs Indigenous women.

  • Murray David Segal

    Following a distinguished career with the Ontario government, including eight years as Deputy Attorney General of Ontario and a stint as Deputy Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs, Murray Segal now practises as an independent legal counsel and consultant in Toronto. His practise focuses on assisting the public and broader public service in improving the delivery of services.

    Mr. Segal was chief legal advisor to the Government of Ontario as well as advisor to Cabinet, the Attorney General, other Ministers, and Deputy Ministers. In that capacity, he oversaw all government litigation. He is also experienced at developing legislation.

    Prior to his time as Deputy Attorney General, Mr. Segal was the Chief Prosecutor for the Province of Ontario, leading the largest prosecution service in Canada.

    Mr. Segal has been certified as a Criminal Law Specialist by the Law Society of Upper Canada and is the author of numerous legal publications, with a particular focus on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, disclosure, and procedure. He is also a frequent participant in continuing education programs.

    Mr. Segal is a member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Mental Health Association of Toronto and is on the Board of Trustees of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. In 2013, he was appointed a member of the Ontario Review Board. In October 2015, Mr. Segal released a Report to the Province of Nova Scotia on the justice system’s handling of the Rehtaeh Parsons matter.

Prince Edward Island

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Quebec

  • Both positions are currently vacant

Saskatchewan

  • Riel Bellegarde

    Riel Bellegarde is a proud member of Treaty Four and the Peepeekisis First Nation, and a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, with a Bachelor of Business Administration from the Whittemore School of Business and Economics.

    Mr. Bellegarde is currently President and CEO of the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies. He started his career with the Peepeekisis First Nation and the File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council before joining the federal public service in 1994, working, from 1997, for Indian and Northern Affairs Canada. He was subsequently appointed to the Executive Group in 1999 and has since held several executive positions across diverse portfolios. In March 2003, he was appointed to the senior position of Regional Director General, Saskatchewan Region.

    Mr. Bellegarde is married with two children.

  • Vianne Timmons

    Dr. Vianne Timmons received her Bachelor of Arts degree in 1979, with a combined major in Psychology and English. She subsequently obtained a Bachelor of Special Education in 1980. Three years later she completed her Master of Education in Special Education. In 1993, Dr. Timmons earned her Ph.D in Education Psychology.

    Dr. Timmons was appointed Chair of the Education Department at the St. Francis Xavier University in 1992 and in 1996 joined the Faculty of Education at the University of Prince Edward Island, where she became Vice-President, Academic Development, in 2001. In 2008, Dr. Timmons became the seventh President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Regina. There, she maintains a wide-ranging research program with particular emphasis on family literacy and inclusive education.

    Active in the academic community, she is currently Chair of Universities Canada’s Standing Committee on International Relations and a member of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, and is Past President of the International Association of the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.

    Dr. Timmons has been honoured with numerous distinctions, including being named an Officer of the Order of Canada, in 2017. In 2016, she received the Council of Advancement and Support of Education District VIII Leadership Award for contributions to post-secondary education. She has served on several boards, including Economic Development Regina, the Wascana Centre Authority and the Canadian Bureau for International Education. She is also a member of the Bras d’Or Mi’kmaq First Nation.

Yukon

  • Carl Friesen

    Carl Friesen has a degree in Geomatics Engineering from the University of Calgary and a degree in Biochemistry from the University of British Columbia.

    A Yukon businessman, husband to wife Robyn and father to two children Zoë and Jeremy, Mr. Friesen is a senior partner and Vice President at Underhill Geomatics Ltd (Underhill and Underhill). He is also a professional engineer, a Canada Lands Surveyor, a British Columbia Land Surveyor and a Fellow of Engineers Canada.

    Mr. Friesen joined Underhill in 1971 and became a partner in 1989. He has managed branch offices and has performed large project management and legal and engineering survey projects in all regions of Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut and British Columbia in addition to undertaking international projects. He is a specialist in legal surveys on Canada Lands, engineering surveys, logistical organization, land claim surveys, GPS, Photo and conventional geodetic control surveys.

    Mr. Friesen remains active in business and social committees in Yukon and on a national level. He is a past member of the Jack Hulland School Council, past president of the Association of Canada Lands Surveyors and past president of Engineers Yukon, ACLS representative on the Canadian Council Land Surveyors and is a current director of the Yukon Contractors Association, a member of the Yukon Land Titles Advisory Committee and the founder/initiator of the Yukon Industry Conference.

  • Diane Strand

    Diane Strand obtained a Business Administration degree from Yukon College in 1996, a Personal Life Coach Certificate from the Rayner Institute in Calgary in 2014 and an Integrative Energy Healing Certificate from Langara College in Vancouver in 2017.

    Since joining the Champagne and Aishihik First Nations in 1996, she has occupied several positions, leading to her 2015 appointment as Director, Community Wellness. Her role is to provide leadership on intergovernmental co-operation and program development related to new initiatives towards community health and well-being, working to remove barriers within existing government operations.

    Mrs. Strand is also a Returning Officer for Kluane Region and an Independent Consultant for Crow’s Light Consulting where she delivers workshops related to community and individual healing.

    Possessing a wealth of volunteer and board experience, she is currently a member of the Yukon Lotteries Commission, the Yukon Hospital Corporation and the St. Elias School Council. She also teaches and leads a dance group of Southern Tutchone Dance: Dakwäkäda Dancers.

    Through both work and volunteer activities, Diane is involved in many heritage-related initiatives, including traditional dance and song; culture camps for youth; and community genealogy studies.

    Mrs. Strand currently lives in Haines Junction and is the mother of two grown children and a grandmother to an 11-month-old grandson.

How are the members appointed to the Advisory Board?

The Governor in Council, on the recommendation of the Prime Minister, appoints the Advisory Board members. Consultations with provincial governments are undertaken in order to inform the appointment of provincial members.

How long is each Advisory Board member’s term?

Federal members of the Advisory Board each serve two-year terms and the provincial or territorial members each serve one-year terms.

May an Advisory Board member’s term be renewed?

Yes, a member’s term may be renewed.

Are members of the Advisory Board paid for their services?

Advisory Board members are entitled to a per diem rate which is consistent with the Remuneration Guidelines for Part-Time Governor in Council Appointees in Agencies, Boards and Commissions. This per diem range is $375-$450 for members and $550-$650 for the Chairperson.

Can I contact the Chair or other members of the Advisory Board?

The Secretariat for the Advisory Board is responsible for managing the Board’s correspondence.  You can share any questions or comments using the form in the “Contact Us” section of the Advisory Board’s website or by calling 1-888-854-1806 (toll-free in North America; TTY 1-800-465-7735).

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