Pierre Blais

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The Honourable
Pierre Blais
Chairman of the Security Intelligence Review Committee
Assumed office
May 1, 2015
Appointed by Stephen Harper
Preceded by Deborah Grey
2nd Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Appeal
In office
September 22, 2009 – June 23, 2014
Nominated by Stephen Harper
Appointed by Michaëlle Jean (as Governor General)
Preceded by John D. Richard
Succeeded by Karen Sharlow
Personal details
Born December 30, 1948
Berthier-sur-Mer, Quebec
Alma mater Laval University

Pierre Blais, PC (born December 30, 1948) is a Canadian jurist and former politician and Cabinet minister.[1] He also served as the Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Appeal until his retirement in June, 2014.[2]

On May 1, 2015, Blais was appointed as chairman of the Security Intelligence Review Committee by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, replacing Interim Chair Deborah Grey who was stepping down from the Committee.[3]


Blais holds both a BA (1968) and an LLB (1976) from Laval University.[1]

Political career[edit]

Blais entered the Canadian House of Commons as the Progressive Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) for Bellechasse, Quebec through the 1984 election.

In 1987, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney appointed Blais to Cabinet as Minister of State for agriculture.[2] Two years later, he was promoted to the position of Solicitor-General.[2] In 1990, he became Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs and, in 1993, was appointed by Mulroney to the position of Minister of Justice.[2]

Blais retained this position, and added the position of President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada when Kim Campbell succeeded Mulroney as PC leader and prime minister.[2]

Blais' political career came to an end when he was defeated, along with the Campbell government, in the 1993 election.

Judicial career[edit]

A member of both the Quebec and Ontario bar, Blais was appointed a Justice of the Federal Court of Canada, Trial Division, an ex officio member of the Court of Appeal and Judge of the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada in June 1998.

Through 2004, Blais presided over hearings related to Holocaust denier Ernst Zündel's detention under a National Security Certificate. In February 2005, he ruled that the security certificate was valid and that the government could deport Zundel immediately.

On February 20, 2008, Blais was appointed to the Federal Court of Appeal. On September 9, 2009, he was appointed chief justice of the Federal Court of Appeal.[4]

Blais retired as Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Appeal effective June 23, 2014.[5]


Parliament of Canada
Preceded by
Alain Garant
Member of Parliament for Bellechasse
Succeeded by
François Langlois
Political offices
Preceded by
Perrin Beatty
Solicitor General of Canada
Succeeded by
Pierre Cadieux
Preceded by
Harvie Andre
Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs
Succeeded by
Pierre H. Vincent
Preceded by
Kim Campbell
Minister of Justice
Succeeded by
Allan Rock
Preceded by
Joe Clark
President of the Privy Council
Succeeded by
Marcel Massé