World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Floyd Laughren

Article Id: WHEBN0000887351
Reproduction Date:

Title: Floyd Laughren  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Bob Rae, Greater Sudbury municipal election, 2006, David Christopherson, Shelley Martel, Laurentian University
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Floyd Laughren

Floyd Laughren
In office
Preceded by Gaston Demers
Succeeded by Blain Morin
Constituency Nickel Belt
Personal details
Born (1935-10-03) October 3, 1935
Shawville, Quebec
Political party New Democrat
Spouse(s) Jeanette Gossen (d. 2007)
Children 3
Residence Sudbury, Ontario
Occupation economist, college professor
Religion Protestant

Floyd Laughren (born October 3, 1935) is a former politician in Ontario, Canada. He sat in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1971 to 1998 as a member of the Ontario New Democratic Party, and served as Finance Minister and Deputy Premier in the government of Bob Rae.


  • Background 1
  • Politics 2
    • Cabinet positions 2.1
  • Later life 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


Laughren was born in Shawville, Quebec to parents Irvin and Erma Laughren. He is one of eight children. The family moved to a farm near Caledonia, Ontario where he grew up. He studied business at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute and York University. After graduation he worked as a manager at a Zellers store. In 1969 he was hired to teach economics at Cambrian College in Sudbury.[1][2]

Laughren's wife Jeanette (née Gossen), whom he married in 1962, died on August 26, 2007. They had three children.[3]


Laughren was first elected to the Ontario legislature in the provincial election of 1971, defeating Progressive Conservative incumbent Gaston Demers by just under 2,000 votes in the Sudbury-area riding of Nickel Belt. He was re-elected without difficulty in the elections of 1975, 1977, 1981, 1985, 1987 and 1990.

Laughren was from left-wing of the party, and supported Richard Johnston for the party's leadership in 1982. He was not initially an ally of Bob Rae, and was also a frequent rival of fellow Northern Ontario Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) Bud Wildman for key shadow cabinet postings. Some of the official critic postings that he held included Colleges and Universities, Treasurer, and Natural Resources.[2]

According to journalist Thomas Walkom, Laughren was planning to retire from politics before the 1990 campaign, and only ran again because the election was called before he could coordinate his departure. The NDP won a majority government and Laughren was sworn in as Finance Minister and Deputy Premier on October 1, 1990.[2]

As Finance Minister, Laughren was frequently criticized for presiding over a series of budget deficits (his 1991 budget proclaimed a deficit of almost ten billion dollars) without significant job creation. Laughren's defenders have noted that much of North America was mired in a significant recession during this period, and that the outgoing Liberal government of David Peterson significantly underestimated expenditure costs in 1990. It has also been noted that Laughren's budgets after 1991 were generally focused on deficit-cutting measures.

Despite his previous reputation for being on the left-wing of the party, Laughren emerged as a proponent of austerity measures and generally centrist policies during his time in government. He also became known as Bob Rae's closest ally in cabinet, notwithstanding their previous differences. Along with Rae, he supported the party's withdrawal from an earlier pledge to introduce public automobile insurance in the province in 1991. He also approved the introduction of casinos to the province, and was a leading proponent of the Social Contract in 1993.

As the province's first socialist Finance Minister, Laughren was nicknamed "Pink Floyd" by the right-wing Sun Media tabloid newspapers. When Liberal Robert Nixon retired from the legislature in 1992, Laughren became its longest-serving member.

The NDP government was defeated in the 1995 provincial election, although Laughren was able to retain Nickel Belt with a somewhat reduced majority. In 1996, he was the only New Democratic MPP from northern Ontario to support Frances Lankin's unsuccessful bid to replace Rae as party leader.

Cabinet positions

Provincial Government of Bob Rae
Cabinet Posts (3)
Predecessor Office Successor
Ministry Created Minister of Finance
Ernie Eves
Robert Nixon Minister of Economics and Treasurer
Ministry Abolished
Robert Nixon Deputy Premier of Ontario
Ernie Eves

Later life

He retired in 1998 and was appointed as chair the Ontario Energy Board. He served a three year term.[1] In 2001, Laughren was appointed to the Board of Governors for Laurentian University. In 2010 he was made Chair of the Board. In 2000, he received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from that institution.[4]

In 2006, he was appointed by Greater Sudbury mayor David Courtemanche to chair an advisory committee to review and recommend improvements to city services in the five-year-old amalgamated city.[1] Laughren offered 34 recommendations for service improvements when he presented his final report on January 10, 2007.

In 2012, Laughren was appointed to a three member panel along with Murray Elston and David McFadden to study Ontario's electricity distribution system. They released a report that recommended the 73 power distribution utilities be reduced to between 8 to 12 with at least 400,000 customers in each of the new utilities.[5]


  1. ^ a b c "Hall of Fame: Floyd Laughren". Community Builders Awards of Excellence. 2007. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c 1995: Who's Who in Canada (86 ed.). Toronto: Global Press. 1995. pp. 425–6. 
  3. ^ "Wife of politician supported causes with steely determination".  
  4. ^ "Floyd Laughren appointed as chair of LU board of governors". Northern Life (Sudbury, Ontario). May 5, 2010. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Renewing Ontario’s Electricity Distribution Sector: Putting the Consumer First". Ministry of Energy. December 2012. 

External links

  • Ontario Legislative Assembly Parliamentarian History

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.