Steven Blaney PC, MP (born April 8, 1965 in Sherbrooke, Quebec) is a Canadian businessman and Conservative politician currently serving as the Minister of Veterans Affairs in the cabinet of the Prime Minister Stephen Harper. He represents the Québec riding of Lévis—Bellechasse in the Canadian House of Commons since the 2006 federal election. Despite his anglophone-sounding name, Blaney is a francophone. His English has a marked French accent, and French is his preferred language in Parliament.
Steven Blaney was born in Sherbrooke, Québec, and was raised in Sainte-Marie-de-Beauce. Today, he lives in Lévis along with his wife Marie Bouchard and his two children, William-Antoine and Alexandra.He graduated as a civil engineer from the Université de Sherbrooke in 1988; and later completed his MBA in Lévis, in 2002.Steven Blaney is an engineer specialized in urban infrastructures and in the environment. For 15 years, he worked in Quebec’s engineering sector, more particularly in water purification and energy efficiency. Réseau Environnement, Canada’s (and Québec’s) largest group of environmental professionals; he presided over the organization’s Québec-Chaudière-Appalaches chapter between 2003 and 2006.
Blaney started up two companies specializing in environmental technology and carried out many innovative environmental projects.Blaney was an active member of
Blaney’s first political stint occurred during the Québec general elections of 1998; he was a candidate of the Action démocratique du Québec in the provincial electoral district of Beauce-Nord. Blaney arrived in third place, behind Normand Poulin (PLQ) and Gaston Gourde (PQ), collecting 14.42% of the votes.
Following many years of activity with the Conservative Party in Québec, Blaney decided to run for the first time for a seat at the House of Commons during the 2006 federal elections in the riding of Lévis-Bellechasse. He successfully defeated Bloc Québécois incumbent Réal Lapierre with 46.40% of the votes.Blaney joined nine other Québec MPs in Ottawa, following the Conservative Party breakthrough in Québec that year.After his victory in 2006, Blaney was appointed Vice-President of the Québec conservative caucus. On May 31, 2007, he was selected as Chair of the Standing Committee on Official Languages; position that he held till September 2010.
On May 2, 2011, Blaney was reelected for a third mandate as representative of Lévis-Bellechasse at the House of Commons earning 43.95% of the votes, beating the NDP candidate with more than 10% of the votes, receiving 1065 more votes than during the 2008 election. On May 18, 2011, Blaney was appointed to the cabinet of Prime Minister Stephen Harper. He assumed the position of Minister of Veterans Affairs taking over this role from Jean-Pierre Blackburn, who was defeated in the May 2 election.
April 25, 2012