Wade MacLauchlan

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Wade MacLauchlan

Wade MacLauchlan in DC (cropped).jpg
32nd Premier of Prince Edward Island
In office
February 23, 2015 – May 9, 2019
MonarchElizabeth II
Lieutenant GovernorFrank Lewis
Antoinette Perry
Preceded byRobert Ghiz
Succeeded byDennis King
Member of the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island for York-Oyster Bed
In office
May 4, 2015 – March 26, 2019
Preceded byRobert Vessey
Succeeded byelectoral district abolished
Leader of the Prince Edward Island Liberal Party
In office
February 21, 2015 – May 8, 2019
Preceded byRobert Ghiz
Succeeded byRobert Mitchell (interim)
Personal details
Born (1954-12-10) December 10, 1954 (age 64)
Stanhope, Prince Edward Island, Canada
Political partyLiberal Party
Domestic partnerDuncan McIntosh
Alma mater
OccupationAcademic, Writer

H. Wade MacLauchlan CM OPEI (born December 10, 1954), is a Canadian academic and politician. He served as the 32nd premier of Prince Edward Island from 2015 to 2019. His government was defeated in the April 23, 2019 general election after one term in power. MacLauchlan resigned as Liberal party leader on May 8, 2019 upon the selection of Robert Mitchell as interim leader.[1]

Early life, education and career[edit]

MacLauchlan was born on 10 December 1954,[2][3] the third of five children born to Harry and Marjorie MacLauchlan in Stanhope, Prince Edward Island. His father was a successful businessman who made his wealth in a number of ventures including pulpwood, heavy construction, golf, cable television, tourism, oil and gas distribution, and real estate.[2][4] MacLauchlan earned an undergraduate Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Prince Edward Island and went on to earn a Bachelor of Laws from the University of New Brunswick and a Master of Laws from Yale University. He worked as a law professor at Dalhousie University before becoming dean of the law school at the University of New Brunswick.[5]

UPEI President[edit]

MacLauchlan was president of the University of Prince Edward Island from 1999 to 2011. During his tenure, he helped the university raise millions of dollars for research and development and oversaw a doubling of enrollment to 4,500 students.[2] He was previously dean of the law school of the University of New Brunswick[2] and a law professor at Dalhousie University.[6]

MacLauchlan has been criticized for a 2006 decision as president of the University of PEI when he banned from campus an edition of the student newspaper, The Cadre, which reprinted controversial Danish cartoons of Muhammad. In a statement, MacLauchlan said that the newspaper's edition, which had re-published political cartoons depicting a prophet of Islam, was "a reckless invitation to disorder."[7] The Canadian Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship issued a statement describing MacLauchlan's actions as "contrary to the duty of all university presidents to maintain their campuses as places where debate of controversial issues may take place."[7]

Political career[edit]

On November 28, 2014, MacLauchlan announced his candidacy for the leadership of the governing Prince Edward Island Liberal Party.[8] He was the sole candidate at the close of nominations on January 20, 2015 and was acclaimed leader on February 21, 2015.[9]

He was sworn in as the 32nd Premier of Prince Edward Island, on February 23, 2015.[10] MacLauchlan is the first member of the Order of Canada to become premier of a province, the first openly gay Premier of Prince Edward Island, and the first openly gay man to be premier of a province.[11]

MacLauchlan's Liberals then led the Liberals to a majority in the 2015 general election. He won election as MLA for York-Oyster Bed, a seat previously held by his chief of staff Robert Vessey.

After the 2019 election, in which the Liberals placed third and MacLauchlan lost his own seat, he announced his resignation as the leader of Liberal Party effective as soon as the Liberal Party chooses an interim leader.[1][12]

Personal life[edit]

MacLauchlan is openly gay;[2] his partner Duncan McIntosh is the founding artistic director of the Watermark Theatre.[13]

MacLauchlan has chaired the Palmer Conference on Public Sector Leadership in 2012: Canada as a Leader in Immigration Policy and Practice, and co-chaired the 2013 Georgetown Conference: Redefining Rural.[8] He also wrote Alex B. Campbell: The Prince Edward Island Premier Who Rocked the Cradle, a biography of Alex Campbell.[14]


MacLauchlan was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 2008, of the Order of Prince Edward Island in 2014, and in 2010 received the Institute of Public Administration of Canada's IPAC Award for Excellence in Public Service.[15] He is the first person to have become a Member of the Order of Canada prior to becoming a provincial premier.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Ross, Shane (April 26, 2019). "Wade MacLauchlan resigns as P.E.I. Liberal leader". CBC News. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e "PEI Liberals rally behind outsider Wade MacLauchlan to lead party". Globe and Mail. December 29, 2014. Retrieved December 30, 2014.
  3. ^ "At 60, Wade MacLauchlan making leap into politics as P.E.I. premier". CTV News. February 21, 2015. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Wade MacLauchlan: P.E.I.'s next Premier". CBC News. February 21, 2015. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  5. ^ "A QuickSketch profile of P.E.I. premier-designate Wade MacLauchlan a". The Prince George Citizen. Canadian Press. February 21, 2015. Archived from the original on 2015-02-21. Retrieved February 21, 2015.
  6. ^ "Wade MacLauchlan". Trudeaufoundation.ca. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  7. ^ a b "Censorship on the Island : What follows is an open letter, dated Feb. 13, from the Canadian Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship to Dr. Wade MacLauchlan, president of the University of Prince Edward Island". Canada.com. Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Wade MacLauchlan announces P.E.I. Liberal leadership bid". Cbc.ca. 28 November 2014. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  9. ^ "Ex-president of UPEI set to become next premier". Globe and Mail. January 20, 2015. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
  10. ^ MacLauchlan and cabinet sworn in
  11. ^ Wherry, Aaron (25 February 2015). "Wade MacLauchlan: P.E.I.'s optimist-in-chief". Macleans. Retrieved 1 May 2015.
  12. ^ "UPDATE: P.E.I. Liberal Leader Wade MacLauchlan announces resignation". The (Charlottetown) Guardian. April 26, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  13. ^ "About Wade". Wadepei.ca. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  14. ^ "About the Author: Wade MacLauchlan". Alexbcampbell.ca. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  15. ^ "2014 Recipients". Gov.pe.ca. Retrieved 4 January 2015.