Julie Payette has the potential to be a strong and inspiring Governor General but she has some very big shoes to fill.
During almost seven years as vice-regal, David Johnston has set the bar very high and he will be missed. Johnston wasn’t as famous as many other recent appointees, but he brought experience, integrity, intelligence, gravitas and warmth to the role.
Johnston represents all that is good about our country: He is kind and considerate. He is humble and fair. He is compassionate and thoughtful.
And he’s also a hockey player.
As governor general, Johnston has celebrated what is great about Canada, but he has also challenged us to make it better. He has displayed a quiet determination to see us preserve what we have built, the values, traditions and institutions that are sometimes more fragile than we think they are, and to continue to pursue both equality and excellence. In all these things, he has led by example. David Johnston has been an exemplary Governor General.