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Clerk of the Privy Council


The Clerk of the Privy Council is the most senior non-political official in the Government of Canada, and provides professional, non-partisan support to the Prime Minister on all policy and operational issues that may affect the government.

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Responsibilities

The Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary to the Cabinet also has particular responsibilities with respect to:
  • ensuring the continuity of government between successive administrations;
  • keeping custody of the records of previous administrations; and
  • enabling the government of the day to understand and recognize the established conventions of Canada’s constitutional monarchy.
The first Clerk of the Privy Council was appointed in 1867. A second title, Secretary to the Cabinet, was added in 1940. Changes to the Public Service Employment Act in 1992 brought a third title, Head of the Public Service, and responsibility for setting the strategic directions for the Public Service of Canada.


Roles

Deputy Minister to the Prime Minister

As the Prime Minister’s Deputy Minister, the Clerk of the Privy Council provides advice and support to the Prime Minister in his or her role as head of government. This includes advice on appointing senior office holders in the public service and organizing the government, on the Cabinet decision-making system, overall policy directions, intergovernmental relations, and the management of specific issues.

Secretary to the Cabinet

As Secretary to the Cabinet, he or she assists the Prime Minister in maintaining the cohesion of the Ministry and giving direction to it. In this role, the Clerk of the Privy Council provides support and advice to the Ministry as a whole to ensure that the Cabinet decision-making system operates according to the Prime Minister’s design.

Head of the Public Service

As Head of the Public Service, he or she serves as the principal link between the Prime Minister and the Public Service of Canada, and is responsible for the quality of expert, professional and non-partisan advice and service provided by the public service to the Prime Minister, Cabinet and to all Canadians.


Ian Shugart

Ian Shugart
Ian Shugart
"Ian Shugart will bring with him a wealth of experience to the role of Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary to the Cabinet. Having served as a deputy minister in three different departments, Mr. Shugart is well-placed to lead the federal Public Service as it continues to implement the Government of Canada’s agenda and deliver high-quality service to Canadians."

  • 2016 - 2019 Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • 2010 - 2016 Deputy Minister of Employment and Social Development
  • 2008 - 2010 Deputy Minister of the Environment, Environment Canada
  • 2006 - 2008 Associate Deputy Minister of the Environment, Environment Canada
  • 1999 - 2006 Assistant Deputy Minister, Health Policy Branch, Health Canada
  • 1997 - 1999 Visiting Assistant Deputy Minister, Health Protection Branch, Health Canada
  • 1993 - 1997 Executive Director, Medical Research Council
  • 1991 - 1993 Assistant Secretary, Social Policy and Programs Branch, Federal-Provincial Relations Office
  • 1989 - 1991 Chief of Staff to the Minister, Energy, Mines and Resources
  • 1984 - 1989 Senior Policy Advisor to the Minister of National Health and Welfare
  • 1982 - 1984 Policy Director, Office of the Leader of the Opposition
  • 1980 - 1982 Constitutional Policy Advisor, Office of the Leader of the Opposition
SOURCE: Privy Council Office.

See also
Federal Government
Privy Council
Former Clerks of the Privy Council

External Links
Clerk of the Privy Council Official Website


Copyright Craig I.W. Marlatt