Canadian Secretary to the Queen
The Canadian Secretary to the Queen (French: Secrétaire canadien de la Reine) is the senior operational member of the Royal Household of Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada. It is the principal channel of communication between the monarch and her Canadian government, provincial governments, and the governments of the fifteen other Commonwealth realms, as well as managing the monarch's other correspondence in the Canadian context and drafting speeches the Queen delivers in Canada or on Canadian topics. The secretary is responsible for advising the prime minister "on matters related to the Canadian Crown, including providing advice on the Government of Canada's heritage-related commemorative initiatives, high level coordination of royal tours to Canada, and state ceremonial and protocol advisory functions." Additionally, the secretary chairs, ex-officio, the Advisory Committee on Vice-Regal Appointments and holds responsibility for the official programme of tours of Canada by members of the Royal Family.
The post was created in 1959 as the Canadian adviser to the monarch and co-ordinator of visits to Canada by members of the Royal Family.
The duties and title were added to other positions: the Sergeant-at-Arms in the House of Commons from 1998 to 2005; and the Usher of the Black Rod in the Senate from 2009 to 2011. In 2012, Stephen Harper made the position of Canadian Secretary to the Queen a standalone position with a mandate to "advise the Prime Minister on matters relating to the Canadian Crown."
In November 2015, responsibility for the Canadian Secretary to the Queen was transferred from the Privy Council Office to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, currently Pablo Rodríguez. As a result, the CSQ no longer directly reports to the Prime Minister.
The position is currently vacant and its future is under review. The roles and responsibilities formerly exercised by the CSQ have been assumed by the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Secretaries to the Queen
- 1959 – 1986: Howard Graham
- 1989 – 1991: John Crosbie Perlin
- 1993 – 2005: Maurice Gaston Cloutier
- 2009 – 2017: Kevin S. MacLeod
- Secretary to the Governor General of Canada
- Private Secretary to the Sovereign
- Principal Secretary (Canada)
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