Gordon H. Fitzgerald

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Gordon Howard Fitzgerald
Speaker of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly
In office
1969–1970
Preceded by Harvey Veniot
Succeeded by George M. Mitchell
MLA for Halifax Northwest
In office
1960–1967
Preceded by Ronald Manning Fielding
Succeeded by riding abolished
MLA for Halifax Cobequid
In office
1967–1970
Preceded by new riding
Succeeded by George Riley
Personal details
Born (1927-01-19)January 19, 1927
Cochrane, Ontario
Died May 1, 2014(2014-05-01) (aged 87)
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Political party Progressive Conservative
Occupation Lawyer

Gordon Howard "Paddy" Fitzgerald (January 19, 1927 – May 1, 2014) was a Canadian politician in the province of Nova Scotia. He was a former Speaker of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly. Fitzgerald was born in Cochrane, Ontario.[1]

A lawyer by profession,[2] Fitzgerald was first elected to the Nova Scotia House of Assembly in the 1960 provincial election representing Halifax Northwest for the Progressive Conservative and was re-elected in 1963. In 1967 he was elected in the new riding of Halifax Cobequid. In 1969, he was appointed Speaker and served until the 1970 provincial election in which the Conservative government was defeated and Fitzgerald lost his seat.

Following his defeat, Fitzgerald returned to his legal practice and was one of the province's top trial lawyers in the 1970s.[3] In 1978, he was convicted for falsifying tax return forms,[4] and was disbarred by the Nova Scotia Bar Association for fraud.[5] In 1980, he was convicted of raping a female client in his office and sentenced to five years imprisonment. He was paroled in 1981 after serving ten months of his sentence[6] and was pardoned in 1992.[4]

In 1982, Fitzgerald was awarded a five-month $15,000 contract by the Nova Scotia Liquor Commission to study proposed changes to the Liquor Control Act. The appointment was met with outrage by the Opposition in the House of Assembly and he resigned the appointment.[5]

Fitzgerald attempted a political comeback in the 1993 provincial election and contested the Progressive Conservative nomination in Dartmouth South to run against Liberal leader John Savage. He won the nomination by a margin of 29 votes to 25 votes for his opponent, Dartmouth city councillor Colin May[2] but Conservative Premier Donald Cameron refused to sign Fitzgerald's nomination papers due to Fitzgerald's rape conviction. May was awarded the nomination instead.[2][7]

Fitzgerald died on May 1, 2014 at a hospital in Halifax, Nova Scotia, aged 87.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Obituary for Gordon Howard FitzGerald "PADDY" at Dartmouth Funeral Home". Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "Ex-con denied Tory label". Canadian Press. April 30, 1993. 
  3. ^ "Fitzgerald Pardoned". Financial Post. September 22, 1992. 
  4. ^ a b "Ex-politician wins rape charge pardon". Toronto Star. September 22, 1992. 
  5. ^ a b "Family hardship cited, ousted lawyer, rapist quits N. S. liquor post". Globe and Mail. March 2, 1982. 
  6. ^ "Government job for ex-MLA rapist upsets opposition". Globe and Mail. February 27, 1982. 
  7. ^ "Odd meets bizarre in campaign zone". Globe and Mail. May 15, 1993. 
  8. ^ "Paddy Fitzgerald, former MLA and Speaker, dies at 87". The Chronicle Herald. May 7, 2014. Retrieved November 19, 2014.