Bernard Valcourt, PC (born February 18, 1952 in Saint-Quentin, New Brunswick) is a Canadian politician and lawyer.
Entrance to politics
Valcourt was first elected to the House of Commons of Canada as a Progressive Conservative candidate in the 1984 election that brought Brian Mulroney to power.
He was appointed to the Cabinet of Canada in 1986 as a Minister of State. In January 1989, he was promoted to Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs,but was forced to resign from Cabinet in August when he was involved in a drunk driving motorcycle accident that cost him an eye.
He returned to Cabinet seven months later as Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.In 1991, he was promoted to Minister of Employment and Immigration,and held the position until the government of Mulroney's successor as PC leader and prime minister, Kim Campbell, was defeated in the 1993 election. Valcourt lost his seat in Parliament in that election.
In May 1995, Valcourt was elected leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of New Brunswick.While he won a seat in the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick in the 1995 provincial election, his party only won six seats against 48 for Frank McKenna's Liberals. Valcourt resigned as leader in 1997 following a lukewarm endorsement of his leadership at a party convention, and was succeeded by Bernard Lord.
Return to federal politics
On March 28, 2011, Valcourt declared his candidacy in the 2011 federal election, representing the riding of Madawaska—Restigouche,and was elected on May 2, 2011. He was subsequently appointed to cabinet as Minister of State for both the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and La Francophonie. His sister Martine Coulombe was elected to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick in the 2010 provincial election. On July 4, 2012, he was given the additional portfolio of Associate Minister of Defence. Valcourt is part of the AEG initiative, saying co-operation between both the federal and provincial governments, as well as utilities, is key. “The Atlantic Energy Gateway initiative has brought the critical players in the region’s energy sector together to not only work toward an affordable, secure, clean energy future, but to also maximize the business and job growth potential of further developing our region’s clean and renewable energy industries,” said Valcourt in a release.
April 29, 2012