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David Lloyd Johnston

David Johnston in front of Brubacher House
Born June 28, 1941 (1941-06-28) (age 68)
Sudbury, Ontario
Known for Principal of McGill University, President of the University of Waterloo

David Lloyd Johnston, CC (born June 28, 1941[1]) is a Canadian academic and author. He is the former Principal of McGill University and the current President of the University of Waterloo.

Born in Sudbury, Ontario, he received an A.B. from Harvard University in 1963. While at Harvard, he played for the ice hockey team, serving as captain, and was twice selected to the All-America team.[2] He met Erich Segal there, and the two became jogging partners. Segal in 1970 wrote the best-selling novel Love Story, creating a character in the book, Davey, captain of the hockey team, based upon Johnston.[3] The movie based upon the book, released later in 1970, starred Ryan O'Neal in the lead role, playing the character Oliver Barrett IV.[4]

Johnston earned an LL.B. from Cambridge University in 1965 and an LL.B. from Queen's University in 1966.

In 1966, he was appointed an Assistant professor in the Faculty of Law at Queen's University. In 1968, he moved to the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. In 1974, he became Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario. In 1979 he became the 14th Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University, serving until 1994 when he returned to the Faculty of Law as a professor. In 1999 he was appointed the fifth President of the University of Waterloo.

In 1988, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada and was promoted to Companion in 1997.

David Johnston has also had the honour of anchoring two televised leaders debates during the elections for the office of Prime Minister of Canada, in 1979 and 1984.

On November 14, 2007, Johnston was appointed as Independent Adviser by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to draft for the government of Canada the terms of reference for a proposed public inquiry into the Mulroney-Schreiber affair. [5] This appointment itself, however, was criticized by the independent citizens' group Democracy Watch as a clear conflict of interest.[6] Johnston had once reported directly to Mulroney during his term as prime minister. Johnston completed his report on January 11, 2008, listing 16 questions of interest for further investigation. A public inquiry will be held once the Canadian House of Commons Ethics Committee completes its own investigative work.[7]

Selected books

  • Computers and Law (1968)
  • Canadian Securities Regulation (1977, 3rd ed. 2002)
  • Canadian Companies and The Stock Exchanges (1979)
  • Business Associations (1983, 3rd ed. 1994)
  • If Quebec Goes... The Real Cost of Separation (1995)
  • Getting Canada On-line: Understanding the Information Highway (1995)
  • Cyberlaw (1997)
  • Securities Regulations (1999)
  • Communications Law in Canada (2000)


External links


Simple English

His Excellency The Right Honourable David Lloyd Johnston, CC, CMM, COM, CD, FRSC (born June 28, 1941) is the Governor General of Canada since October 1, 2010.[1] He is also an academic and an author.


  1. Redmond, Chris, ed (June 28, 2006). "The first day of the rest of your life". Daily Bulletin (Waterloo: University of Waterloo). Retrieved July 8, 2010. 


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