Gerald Regan

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The Honourable
Gerald Regan
19th Premier of Nova Scotia
In office
October 28, 1970 – October 5, 1978
Monarch Elizabeth II
Lieutenant Governor Victor de Bedia Oland
Clarence Gosse
Preceded by G.I. Smith
Succeeded by John Buchanan
MLA for Halifax Needham
In office
May 30, 1967 – February 18, 1980
Preceded by New Riding
Succeeded by Edmund L. Morris
MP for Halifax
In office
April 8, 1963 – November 8, 1965
Serving with Robert McCleave
Preceded by Edmund Morris
Succeeded by Michael Forrestall
In office
February 18, 1980 – September 4, 1984
Preceded by George Cooper
Succeeded by Stewart McInnes
Personal details
Born Gerald Augustine Paul Regan[1]
(1928-02-13) February 13, 1928 (age 92)
Windsor, Nova Scotia
Political party Liberal
Spouse(s) Anita Carole Thomas Harrison[2]
Occupation lawyer
Religion Catholic[3]

Gerald Augustine Paul Regan, PC (born February 13, 1928) is a Canadian politician, who served as the 19th Premier of Nova Scotia from 1970 to 1978.

Life and career

Regan was born in Windsor, Nova Scotia, the son of Rose Mary (née Greene) and Walter Edward Regan.[4][5] He has Irish ancestry.[6] Regan graduated from Dalhousie Law School and was admitted to the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society in 1954. He became one of the region's best known labour lawyers, and his high-profile image led to an invitation to enter politics.

He was first elected to the House of Commons in the 1963 federal election.[7] He resigned his seat in 1965 when he was named leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party. Regan entered the Nova Scotia House of Assembly in 1967, and aggressively pursued the government of Premier George Isaac Smith as Leader of the opposition. Regan led a fourteen-hour filibuster against the government's plans to increase the sales tax in 1969.

Regan's Liberals won a minority government in 1970, and were re-elected with a majority in 1974.

As premier, Regan supported industrialization and the development of offshore gas and oil. His first government amended the province's labour code to prevent courts from issuing injunctions to prevent picketing in labour disputes, and the office of the provincial ombudsman was established. In its second term, the Regan government nationalized the Nova Scotia Light and Power electrical utility, and consolidated electricity supply under the Nova Scotia Power Corporation. A massive plan for the development of tidal power in the Bay of Fundy was also announced.

His government was defeated by John Buchanan's Progressive Conservative Party in the 1978 general election, in part due to the oil shock's effect on the economy.

Regan returned to the federal House of Commons in the 1980 federal election, and was appointed Minister of Labour and Minister of State for International Trade in the Cabinet of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. Regan was defeated along with the Liberal government in the 1984 election.

In March 1995, he was charged with 16 counts of sexual offences, and ultimately faced trial for eight sex-related charges for events that allegedly occurred in 1956 and 1969. He was acquitted, but faced more charges in 1999. In 2002, the crown attorney's office announced that it would not continue prosecution on the eight remaining charges of sexual assault due to the age of the allegations, cost and the age of the defendant.[8]

Regan's wife is Anita Carole Thomas (Harrison), whose father, John Harrison, was a Saskatchewan Liberal Member of Parliament.[1][9] His son Geoff Regan is the current Speaker of the Canadian House of Commons and was first elected as a Liberal MP in 1993. From 2003 until 2006, he served as Minister of Fisheries and Oceans in the government of Paul Martin. Two of his daughters are also well-known: Nancy Regan was a local television personality with ATV, and Laura Regan is an actress.


  1. 1.0 1.1 [1]
  2. [2]
  3. [3]
  4. [4]
  5. [5]
  6. [6]
  7. Gerald Regan – Parliament of Canada biography, Accessed 14 April 2011
  8. Kimber, Stephen (April 25, 2002). "GERALD REGAN CASE UPDATE". The Coast. Retrieved November 3, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. [7]
23rd Ministry – Cabinet of John Turner
Cabinet Post (1)
Predecessor Office Successor
Jean Chrétien Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources
Patricia Carney
22nd Ministry – Second cabinet of Pierre Trudeau
Cabinet Posts (6)
Predecessor Office Successor
position created Minister for International Trade
Francis Fox
' Minister of State (International Trade)
Francis Fox Secretary of State for Canada
Serge Joyal
' Minister of Amateur Sport
Lincoln Alexander Minister of Labour
Charles Caccia
' Minister of State (Sports)