Media Advisory - Their Excellencies to Visit Halifax and Present Honours

OTTAWA, July 7, 2016 /CNW/ - Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Mrs. Sharon Johnston will be in Halifax between Monday, July 11 and Wednesday, July 13, 2016, for an official visit.

During their stay, Their Excellencies will participate in an on-stage conversation to talk about their recently published books and attend the Annual Conference of the Governor General, Lieutenant Governors and Territorial Commissioners. The Governor General will also recognize remarkable Canadians from across the Atlantic provinces with honours during a ceremony at Pier 21.  

Below is Their Excellencies' detailed itinerary. Timings are indicated in Atlantic Daylight Time (UTC/GMT -3 hours). 

Monday, July 11

4 p.m.
On-Stage Conversation and Book Signing with Their Excellencies
Their Excellencies will take part in an on-stage conversation to discuss their recently published books: The Idea of Canada: Letters to a Nation, by Governor General David Johnston and published by Signal/McClelland & Stewart; and Matrons and Madams, by Mrs. Sharon Johnston and published by Dundurn Press. They will then engage in a question-and-answer period and participate in a book-signing session. The event will be open and free to the public at the Halifax Central Library.

About the The Idea of Canada: Letters to a Nation
In letters to characters and individuals living and dead, eminent and unknown, The Idea of Canada: Letters to a Nation touches on a wide range of topics: learning, law and justice, kindness and courage, innovation, Aboriginal education, bilingualism, mental health, hockey and more. Presented in three parts—"What Shapes Me", "What Consumes Me" and "What Inspires Me"—these letters are about Canada and are written to Clara Hughes, Chris Hadfield, the Aga Khan, former governors general, Canadian teachers, an Inuit boy His Excellency met in Repulse Bay, and many others. He hopes that the book will inspire readers of all ages to think about Canada, what they want for their country and how to shape its future as a smart and caring nation.

About Matrons and Madams
Clara Durling, a British widow of the First World War, arrives in Canada as the new superintendent of the Lethbridge Hospital just as wounded soldiers stream home. Lily Parsons is a young, widowed schoolteacher from Nova Scotia who ends up in the same city, managing a brothel called The Last Post. Set against the backdrop of love, union organizers, amorous bachelors, gamblers, drinkers and prostitutes, the lives of these two women unexpectedly intertwine when Clara, in the heat of local politics and responding to the highest incidence of venereal disease in the province, establishes the first venereal disease clinic in the province, with Lily's help. In this sprawling saga, Lily and Clara must confront the city's conservative thinkers to bring help and compassion to wounded veterans.

Paul O'Regan Hall, Halifax Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Road
MEDIA CONTACTS: Kasia Morrison, Communications Officer, Halifax Public Libraries, 902-490-5852,;
Shona Cook, Publicity Manager for The Idea of Canada, Penguin Random House Canada,
416-433-9699,; and
Jaclyn Hodsdon, Publicist for Matrons and Madams, Dundurn Press, 416-214-5544, ext. 234, 

Annual Conference of the Governor General, Lieutenant Governors and Territorial Commissioners
Their Excellencies will attend this annual gathering from July 11 to 13, 2016. The meeting provides an opportunity for vice-regal representatives to discuss matters of mutual interest and how they can continue to fulfill their role and serve Canadians from coast to coast to coast.



Wednesday, July 13

9:30 a.m.
Visit to the CAF Health Services Centre (Atlantic) by Her Excellency Sharon Johnston
Mrs. Johnston will visit the Mental Health Clinic of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Health Services Centre (Atlantic) in her new role as honorary captain (Navy) for Military Personnel Command. She will also have a chance to meet and chat with staff and clients of the clinic.

The CAF has a wide variety of mental health services and programs available to its members. Mental health clinics at bases across Canada provide general mental health care, operational trauma and stress support, psychosocial services and addictions counselling. For more information, visit
CAF Health Services Centre (Atlantic), Canadian Forces Base Halifax, 2778 Gottingen Street
PHOTO OP – Upon arrival and at the beginning of the visit
MEDIA CONTACT: Mike Bonin, Base Public Affairs Officer, CFB Halifax, 902-721-1968 or 902-497-0566 (cell),  


1 p.m.
Presentation of Honours
His Excellency will present honours to more than 70 remarkable Canadians from across the Atlantic provinces to recognize excellence, courage or exceptional dedication to service. The ceremony will be streamed live online at starting at 1 p.m. (ADT). The list of recipients, their citations and additional information will be published in a separate media advisory.

The Governor General presents honours on behalf of all Canadians in communities across the country to help share inspiring stories, celebrate tremendous contributions to our society and connect with Canadians. From community volunteers to astronauts, from actors to members of the military, from scholars to everyday citizens, hundreds of Canadians earn our applause and gratitude. For more information about honours or to nominate someone who inspires you, visit
Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, 1055 Marginal Road

Follow GGDavidJohnston and RideauHall on Facebook and Twitter.


SOURCE Governor General of Canada

For further information: Marie-Pierre Bélanger, Rideau Hall Press Office, 613-998-9166 (office), 613-852-3248 (cell),

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