Sheila Martin

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Paul and Sheila Martin with George and Laura Bush.

Sheila Ann Martin née Cowan (born July 31, 1943) is the wife of Paul Martin, who served as the 21st Prime Minister of Canada from December 12, 2003 to February 6, 2006.

She and Paul were neighbours and her father was law partners with Paul Martin Sr in Windsor, Ontario. Married in 1965, she has been the wife of a politician and a stay-at-home mom.

She is a private person who played a low-key role in her husband's career.

A Canada Steamship Lines ship, Sheila Ann, is named in her honour.[1]

They have three sons:

  1. Paul William, born September 11, 1966
  2. Jamie Robert, born June 21, 1969
  3. David Patrick, born September 13, 1974

Before her husband became the Prime Minister of Canada, Sheila Martin's work in Ottawa included serving on a committee called Politics and the Pen, and on this committee she helped give prizes and money to Canadian writers. The job was said to fit with her "own literary tastes."[2] In 2002, when Paul Martin left the cabinet, he credited her as a support to him and as an advisor:

Third, I want to thank the many friends who called or sent messages in recent days. I'm enriched by their friendship and their support. In that respect, I want to thank above all others Sheila and my family for their patience and their advice.[3]

Throughout these years, Sheila Martin apparently had little aspirations in regards to her husband's office. Her husband's biographer John Gray quoted her as saying, "Oh, God, I don't want to do this at all, so I just don't think about it."[2]


  1. ^ CBC - Canada Votes 2004
  2. ^ a b John Gray, Paul Martin: The Power of Ambition, Key Porter Books, 2003, p. 71.
  3. ^, "Text of Paul Martin's statement," June 3, 2002, URL accessed December 19, 2006.
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Aline Chaîné Chrétien
Spouse of the Prime Minister of Canada
Succeeded by
Laureen Teskey Harper