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Justin Trudeau names top cop, prisoners’ advocate as new senators

The first female head of the OPP,  a former federal court judge and a top women’s prisoner advocate are among the latest slate of appointees to the Senate.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced today he will recommend the appointments of six new, independent senators to fill vacancies for Ontario.

They are:

  • Gwen Boniface, the first woman appointed as commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police and the first female president of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.
  • Tony Dean, an internationally recognized professor at the University of Toronto’s School of Public Policy since 2009.
  • Sarabjit S. Marwah, retired vice-chairman and chief operating officer of Scotiabank.
  • Lucie Moncion, chief executive officer of the Alliance des caisses populaires de l’Ontario.
  • Kim Pate, executive director of the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies and part-time professor in the University of Ottawa’s faculty of law.
  • Howard Wetston, counsel with Goodmans LLP and adjunct professor of law at the University of Toronto.

The new appointments were selected using the government’s new application, merit-based process, as were last week’s nine appointments.

The current count of non-affiliated (or Independent) senators stands at 38. There are 21 Liberals and 40 Conservatives.

There are still six vacancies in Quebec, which are expected to be filled soon.

“I am pleased today to put forward six exceptional candidates as new senators representing Ontario,” Trudeau said in a statement. 

“These men and women were selected using the government’s new merit-based system, a real example of democracy in action that will contribute to a more modern and independent Upper Chamber.

“I look forward to working with those summoned to the Senate and seeing them use their remarkable knowledge and experience to benefit our great country.”

Trudeau has promised to transform what had become a hyper-partisan, scandal-plagued Senate to restore it as an independent chamber of sober second thought. In January 2014, he expelled all senators from the Liberal caucus.