Ontario’s new lieutenant-governor has been sworn in with an installation ceremony full of pomp and procedure and a pledge to help build an inclusive province.
Lieutenant-Governor Edith Dumont is the province’s 30th lieutenant-governor and the first francophone to hold the office.
Former lieutenant-governor Elizabeth Dowdeswell has ended her term, which began in 2014 and during which her office said she conducted about 6,000 engagements in all of Ontario’s 124 ridings.
The ceremony today began with Lieutenant-Governor Dumont riding in a carriage to the Ontario legislature and a viceregal salute to the outgoing lieutenant-governor, before Lieutenant-Governor Dumont took the oath of office and an Oath of Allegiance to King Charles.
Lieutenant-Governor Dumont has held a long career in education, working as a special-education teacher, a school principal and an executive. She was also the first woman to lead the Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario, a school board in eastern Ontario.
She says she hopes to have her office support democracy in Ontario.
“My goal will be to ensure, both in words and through positive social action, that the office of the lieutenant-governor remains a relevant institution for advancing civic engagement, building inclusive communities, and supporting the future of our democracy,” she said in a speech inside the legislature.
Lieutenant-Governor Dumont said she will be guided by reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.
“Today my commitment is clear, the path to reconciliation and the pursuit of truth shall inform every action I take,” she said.
Lieutenant-Governor Dumont has most recently served as vice-president of partnerships, communities and international relations at the Université de l’Ontario francais in Toronto.
She said she has devoted 40 years of her life to building inclusive communities.
“That means celebrating diversity in all its forms while respecting and appreciating our cultures, identities, languages, and rights,” Lieutenant-Governor Dumont said.
Premier Doug Ford said Lieutenant-Governor Dumont is “highly regarded” for her leadership and service.
“Her honour is a respected educator and community advocate having worked as a special-education teacher, a school principal, and an executive,” he said. “She’s a champion for our francophone communities here in Ontario and right across Canada.”
Lieutenant-Governor Dumont and her husband have three children and her official biography says that in her spare time, she enjoys open water swimming, hiking, cross-country skiing and skating on the Rideau Canal.