Has two grown daughters; Nathalie, 27, a veterinary technician studying biology and environment at the University of Ottawa, and Julie, 24, a visual journalist interning with a Los Angeles-based documentary maker.
Getting to the bottom of vexing public-policy issues. (“I actually enjoy doing this kind of stuff, so it’s not really work,” he says, describing his routine for several months of being holed up in his study for hours each night working on the commission’s report. “Particularly if you ever do figure out how it works and how it could work better. I think that’s neat.”)
Tennis, lifting weights, Pilates and – most recently – yoga.
Walking the family’s dogs.
Joined the Finance Department in Ottawa in 1977, rising through the ranks to Associate Deputy Minister, where he co-ordinated planning of federal budgets, before leaving in 2000. (“I never once asked for a promotion and I never actually applied for a promotion. It was just that always somebody came and said, ‘We have some challenges in this area, we want you to go there for a while,’ and I’d say, ‘yeah, fine.’ There was nothing ever strategic about it.”)
Joined Toronto-Dominion Bank in 2000 as senior vice-president and chief economist. While there, was asked to compete for the Bank of Canada Governor’s job after David Dodge said he would not seek a second term, but opted against it.
Left TD in 2010 to teach part-time at Queen’s, his alma mater, while still pursuing research interests such as productivity.
In 2011, Premier Dalton McGuinty tapped him to head the Commission on the Reform of Ontario’s Public Services.