Joan Marie Aylward Appointed as Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador

Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada has appointed Joan Marie Aylward as the new Lieutenant Governor for Newfoundland and Labrador, succeeding Judy Foote. This appointment signifies a significant milestone for the province as Aylward takes on the essential role of representing the Crown in this unique and vibrant part of Canada.

The Lieutenant Governor is pivotal as the Queen’s representative within a Canadian province. This appointment is primarily ceremonial, but it carries immense constitutional significance. Appointed by the Governor General of Canada on the advice of the Prime Minister, the Lieutenant Governor fulfills various duties that symbolize the connection between the people of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Canadian Crown.

Some of the key responsibilities of the Lieutenant Governor include:

  1. Opening and Closing the Legislative Assembly: The Lieutenant Governor formally inaugurates and concludes sessions of the provincial legislative assembly, delivering the Speech from the Throne at the commencement of each session. This speech outlines the government’s priorities and legislative agenda.
  2. Granting Royal Assent: The Lieutenant Governor bestows royal assent to bills passed by the provincial legislature, which is the final step in the legislative process before a bill becomes law.
  3. Representing the Monarch: In the absence of the Monarch, the Lieutenant Governor represents the Crown in the province, performing ceremonial duties and presiding over official events and ceremonies.
  4. Promoting the Province: The Lieutenant Governor also plays a significant role in promoting the culture, history, and achievements of Newfoundland and Labrador, often attending various events and functions within the province.

Aylward brings a distinguished background that uniquely qualifies her for the role of Lieutenant Governor. She graduated from Memorial University and began her professional journey as an intensive care nurse, dedicating five years to providing critical care and patient support. Her commitment to healthcare continued as she transitioned into education, serving on the faculty of St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital School of Nursing. Her involvement in the healthcare sector also extended to leadership roles as she assumed the position of President of the Registered Nurses’ Union Newfoundland and Labrador.

1996, Joan Marie Aylward entered the political arena by winning a seat in the Newfoundland and Labrador House of Assembly. During her tenure in the provincial legislature, she held a series of pivotal roles, which included serving as the Minister of Finance and President of the Treasury Board, the Minister of Human Resources and Employment, and the Minister of Health and Community Services. Aylward’s work in these positions was instrumental in shaping policies and initiatives that had a lasting impact on the province.

Following her successful political career, Ms. Aylward continued her dedication to public service. She assumed the role of Executive Director of St. Patrick’s Mercy Home, where her leadership contributed to the well-being of residents. In addition, she took on the responsibility of Vice-Chair of the Newfoundland and Labrador Labour Relations Board, showcasing her commitment to labor relations and fair practices.

Notably, in 2018, Ms. Aylward received a significant appointment as a member of the National Seniors Council, reflecting her expertise and advocacy for the elderly population. Her influence extended further as she chaired the Aging Population Committee for the Health Accord in Newfoundland and Labrador, focusing on healthcare and services for seniors.

As Aylward takes on this esteemed role, she carries the weight of tradition and the responsibility of representing the Crown and the people of Newfoundland and Labrador. Her diverse background and dedication to the well-being of the province’s residents make her an ideal choice for this important position, and the province’s people eagerly anticipate her tenure.