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August 14/07 9:10 am - New Minister for Heritage & Sports

Posted by Editor on 08/14/07

New Minister for Heritage & Sports

As was widely predicted, Prime Minister Stephen Harper shuffled his Cabinet today, with Josée Verner being appointed Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages. The portfolio includes Sports Canada. Verner replaces Bev Oda. Verner has no background in sports.

The official biography for Verner states:

Josée Verner was first elected as a Member of Parliament for the riding of LouisˆSaint-Laurent in 2006. On February 6, 2006, she was appointed Minister of International Cooperation and Minister for La Francophonie and Official Languages.

In addition to being the chair of the Quebec Caucus for the Conservative Party of Canada, in June of 2004 she was named the spokesperson for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Region of Quebec in Mr. Harper's shadow cabinet. This was expanded to also include the Official Languages portfolio in September 2005.

Ms. Verner has spent close to 20 years in the communications and public service fields. She worked for former Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa and for the deputy speaker of Quebec's National Assembly, as well as at the provincial Ministry of Health and Social Services.

Ms. Verner is deeply involved in her community, and has spent a significant amount of time fundraising for the Children's Make A Wish Foundation. She is married with three children.


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