Governor General of Canada

representative of the monarch of Canada

The Governor General of Canada is the person who represents Canada's King (or Queen). The King of Canada does not spend much time in Canada because he is also the King of several other countries.

Governor General of Canada
Gouverneure générale du Canada
Badge of the Governor General of Canada
Mary Simon

since 26 July 2021
Government of Canada
StyleHis/Her Excellency
The Right Honourable
AppointerMonarch of Canada
on the advice of the prime minister of Canada
Term lengthAt Her Majesty's pleasure
Formation1 July 1867
First holderThe Viscount Monck
DeputyDeputies of the Governor General of Canada
SalaryCA$288,900 annually Edit this at Wikidata

The Governor General is technically chosen by the King and is allowed to use almost all of the King's powers. But most of the time neither the King nor the Governor General use their powers without advice from the Prime Minister of Canada.

  • The King would normally always choose whoever the Prime Minister wants them to choose to become Governor General.
  • The Governor General usually uses his/her powers for what the Prime Minister advices him/her to do.

Once in a while the Prime Minister may want something done that the Governor General is not allowed to do on her own. The Prime Minister must then go straight to the King, for example for the appointment of 4 or 8 extra Senators to Parliament.

Official Title change

As Canada has two official federal languages, the Governor General's title is in both English and French.

The Governor General's style and title in full is, in English: Her Excellency The Right Honourable Julie Payette, Chancellor and Principal Companion of the Order of Canada, Chancellor and Commander of the Order of Military Merit, Chancellor and Commander of the Order of Merit of the Police Forces, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief in and over Canada, and in French: Son Excellence la très honorable Julie Payette, chancelière et compagne principale de l'ordre du Canada, chancelière et commandeuse de l'ordre du mérite militaire, chancelière et commandeuse de l'ordre du mérite des forces de police, gouverneure générale et commandant en chef du Canada

Living former governors-general of Canada change

As of May 2024, there are five living former governors general of Canada. The most recently deceased former governor general, Roméo LeBlanc (1995–1999), died on 24 June 2009.