The Viceregal Lion
  1. The Governor General of Canada
  2. His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston
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Former Governors General

From 1867 to 1931, Canada's governor general was chosen by the Sovereign, and the person chosen was always a British aristocrat. In 1931, the Canadian government was granted the responsibility to make recommendations to the Sovereign for the position of governor general.

It was only in 1952 that, without first consulting with the British prime minister, a prime minister of Canada recommended to the Sovereign one single name: Vincent Massey, Canada’s first Canadian Governor General. This nomination marked an important evolution in Canadian history.

The naming of a Canadian governor general reflected this country’s new sense of autonomy and identity in the post-war era. Since 1952, all of Canada’s governors general have been and must be Canadian citizens. As you will discover when reading their biographies, Canadian governors general come from all walks of life and are representative of the Canadian population.

Date modified: November 19, 2013