Commissioner of Yukon

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Commissioner of Yukon
Commissaire du Yukon
Badge of the Commissioner of Yukon.svg
Badge of the Commissioner of Yukon
Flag of the Commissioner of Yukon.svg
Flag of the Commissioner of Yukon
Incumbent
Angélique Bernard

since 12 March 2018[1]
StyleThe Honourable
Inaugural holderJames Morrow Walsh
FormationAugust 17, 1897
Websiteyukon.ca/en/commissionerofyukon/home

The commissioner of Yukon (French: Commissaire du Yukon) is the representative of the Government of Canada in the Canadian federal territory of Yukon. The commissioner is appointed by the federal government and, in contrast to the governor general of Canada or the lieutenant governors of the Canadian provinces, is not a viceroy and therefore not a direct representative of the Canadian monarch in the territory eo ipso.

List of commissioners[edit]

Commissioners (1894–1918)[edit]

Before the Yukon became a Territory on June 13, 1898, the Dominion agent/ gold commissioner (Constantine and Fawcett) and the chief executive officer of the Yukon (Walsh for the first part of his term) was the Yukon representative.

# Image Commissioner Term start Term end
1 Inspector Charles Constantine May 26, 1894 May 27, 1897
2 Thomas Fawcett May 27, 1897 August 17, 1897
3 James Morrow Walsh.jpg James Morrow Walsh August 17, 1897 July 4, 1898
4 William Ogilvie (surveyor).jpg William Ogilvie July 4, 1898 March 11, 1901
5 James Hamilton Ross by Victor A Long 1912.jpg James Hamilton Ross March 11, 1901 October 16, 1902
6 LtGovNewlands.jpg Henry William Newlands (Acting) February 8, 1902 August 15, 1902
7 Zachary Taylor Wood (Acting) August 15, 1902 March 4, 1903
8 Frederick Tennyson Congdon March 4, 1903 October 27, 1904
9 Zachary Taylor Wood (Acting) October 29, 1904 May 27, 1905
10 WilliamWBMcInnes23.jpg William Wallace Burns McInnes May 27, 1905 December 31, 1906
11 John T. Lithgow (Acting) December 31, 1906 June 17, 1907
12 Alexander Henderson June 17, 1907 June 1, 1911
13 Arthur Wilson (Administrator) June 1, 1911 February 1, 1912
14 George Black, Commissioner of the Yukon.jpg George Black February 1, 1912 April 1, 1918
15 George Norris Williams (Administrator while George fought in WWI) October 13, 1916 April 1, 1918

Gold commissioners[edit]

The offices of Commissioner and Administrator were abolished in 1918. Office replaced by the Gold Commissioner who was responsible to the federal Minister of the Interior (and since 1936 the Minister of Mines and Resources). Gosselin was not a Commissioner

# Image Gold Commissioner Term start Term end
16 George P. MacKenzie April 1, 1918 November 16, 1924
17 Percy Reid November 17, 1924 November 14, 1927
18 George A. Jeckell (Acting) November 14, 1927 September 10, 1928
19 George I. MacLean September 10, 1928 June 30, 1932

Comptrollers[edit]

The positions of Gold Commissioner and Comptroller were combined in 1932 with the Comptroller being the title for the chief executive. The title was changed to "Controller" in 1936.

# Controller Term start Term end
20 George A. Jeckell Comptroller (1932–36) Controller (1936–47) June 30, 1932 September 20, 1947
21 John Edward Gibben September 20, 1947 July 12, 1948

Commissioners (1948–present)[edit]

In 1948, the title of chief executive once again became Commissioner. By the 1960s, the Commissioner had formed an executive committee that included some members of the elected Territorial Council, in essence a cabinet. (By the mid 1970s, the Territorial Council was referring to itself as a Legislative Assembly, and its members MLAs rather than Councillors.) Beginning in 1978, Yukon had party government with a Government Leader.

In October 1979, federal minister Jake Epp (Indian Affairs and Northern Development) issued a letter, often known as the Epp letter, instructing the Commissioner to assume a role similar to that of a provincial Lieutenant-Governor, and devolving leadership of the day-to-day government to the majority leader of the legislative assembly (territorial council), to whom the Epp letter granted the authority to use the title Premier. At that time, the government leader added a fifth elected member to the committee, which became an executive council.

Subsequent federal ministers did not revoke this authority and instruction, which was eventually codified in amendments to the Yukon Act, along with redesignation of the legislative assembly from territorial council. The process, particularly since 1979, has devolved powers from the federal government to the territorial government, bringing authority which is normally reserved by the Articles of Confederation for provinces to the territory.

# Commissioner Term start Term end
21 John Edward Gibben July 13, 1948 August 15, 1950
22 Andrew Harold Gibson August 15, 1950 October 15, 1951
23 Frederick Fraser October 15, 1951 November 15, 1952
24 Wilfred George Brown November 15, 1952 June 8, 1955
25 Frederick Howard Collins June 8, 1955 May 1, 1962
26 Gordon Robertson Cameron May 1, 1962 November 7, 1966
27 James Smith November 7, 1966 July 1, 1976
28 Arthur MacDonald Pearson July 1, 1976 October 31, 1978
29 Frank Fingland October 31, 1978 January 19, 1979
30 Ione Christensen January 20, 1979 October 9, 1979
31 Douglas Bell October 9, 1979 March 27, 1986
32 Ken McKinnon March 27, 1986 June 11, 1995
33 Judy Gingell June 12, 1995 September 30, 2000
34 Jack Cable October 1, 2000 November 30, 2005
35 Geraldine Van Bibber December 1, 2005 December 16, 2010
36 Doug Phillips December 17, 2010 January 31, 2018[2]
37 Angélique Bernard March 12, 2018[3] Incumbent

Living former commissioners[edit]

As of August 2021, five former commissioners are alive, the oldest being Frank Fingland (1978–1979, born 1928).

Name Term Date of birth
Frank Fingland 1978–1979 1928 (age 92–93)
Ione Christensen 1979 (1933-10-10) October 10, 1933 (age 87)
Judy Gingell 1995–2000 1948 (age 72–73)
Geraldine Van Bibber 2005–2010 (1951-07-03) July 3, 1951 (age 70)
Doug Phillips 2010–2018 (1946-12-04) December 4, 1946 (age 74)

References[edit]

  • "History". Commissioner of Yukon. Government of Yukon. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
  • "Commissioners of the Yukon Territory". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
Specific

External links[edit]