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Paul Thomas LaFleche, Ph.D., P.Geo
Acting Deputy Minister, Department of Agriculture
Description: Rosalind Penfound, Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Paul LaFleche is an experienced senior executive and strategic advisor in government, academia and economic development. He has had a varied career in the private and public sectors.

Starting in the natural resources field as an exploration geoscientist, his focus was to connect applied research to economic development through the use of innovative exploration technologies. He practiced as a geoscientist in the university, government and private sectors as a professor, research scientist and consultant.

Interested in furthering the development of technological applications to Canada's economic challenges, Paul entered the field of public administration to focus on bridging the academic/business gap that he had experienced in the university and private sector research laboratory domains.

In the mid 1990s, Paul took a position as a public education administrator as principal of one of Canada's premier geomatics institutes, Nova Scotia's College of Geographic Sciences (COGS). In 1996 he also accepted the position of the Chair of the Management Board of the Cornwallis Park Development Agency, the agency charged with redeveloping the Canadian Forces Base Cornwallis. He held that position for over a decade, guiding the Agency to self-sufficiency, while assisting in the addition of over 100 jobs to the local economy through development and corporate recruitment activities.

Interested in levering the work of COGS faculty into the research field, Paul led the Nova Scotia Community College into applied research, establishing the Applied Geomatics Research Group. In 1998, Paul was named principal of the Nova Scotia Community College's Virtual Campus, with a mandate to develop internet-based college programming. In 1999, Paul became the first Vice President, Academic, of the Nova Scotia Community College.

Following a secondment to the Province of Nova Scotia's Treasury & Policy Board in 2002, Paul was appointed Secretary to the Nova Scotia Executive Council (Cabinet). In the Spring of 2004, he assumed the additional role of Clerk of the Executive Council with responsibility for the supervising the Government's legal role in exercising the authority of the Crown.

On February 16, 2007 Paul was appointed Deputy Minister for the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture.

Paul currently serves as Past President of the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Nova Scotia and is a licensed vocational education teacher with a Diploma in Adult Education from the Nova Scotia Community College. He holds Masters and Doctorate degrees from McGill University, a Bachelors of Science from Loyola College, Concordia University and a Masters in Public Administration from Carleton University.

Paul resides in Halifax with his wife and twin daughters.


Department of Agriculture
6th Floor (Suite 605), WTCC
1800 Argyle Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3J 3N8

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 2223
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3J 3C4

Phone: (902) 424-0301

  Last Update: July 10, 2012