Vision 2025: Beyond our Imagination

Vision 2025: Beyond our Imagination is an industry-led initiative to start a new dialogue between industry, government, the public, and other stakeholders that will chart a course for Canada’s future in the international aerospace sector.

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Meet the Chair

Hon. Jean Charest

With a public service career spanning almost 30 years, Jean Charest is one of Canada’s best known political figures. Mr. Charest was first elected to the House of Commons in 1984 and, at age 28, became Canada’s youngest cabinet minister as Minister of State for Youth.

In 1991, he was named Minister of the Environment and, a year later, he led Canada’s delegation at the 1992 Earth Summit on the economy and the environment in Rio. At the summit he was praised for his leadership role among G7 countries on climate change and biodiversity.

In 1993, Mr. Charest was named Minister of Industry and Deputy Prime Minister of Canada.

In 1994, Jean Charest was chosen Leader of the federal Progressive Conservative Party, becoming the party’s first French Canadian leader. He held that post until 1998 when he became the Leader of the Québec Liberal Party. Mr. Charest then broke a 50-year provincial record by winning three consecutive election campaigns in 2003, 2007 and 2008.

Mr. Charest has received the following distinguished awards and honours:

  • Member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada, June 1986 (Canada)
  • Commandeur of the Légion d’honneur, February 2009 (France)
  • Bavarian Order of Merit, July 2007 (Germany)
  • Grand Croix of the Ordre de la Pléiade, November 2007 (Francophony)
  • The Woodrow Wilson Award for Public Service, October 2011 (United-States)
  • Medal of the Academy of Distinguished Canadians and Americans of the Maple Leaf Foundation, November 2009 (United-States)
  • Statesman Award from the Foreign Policy Association, June 2011 (United-States)
  • South Australian International Climate Change Leadership Award, December 2010 (Australia)

Mr. Charest has been a lecturer on political science at Concordia University, and he remains active in public policy and community activities. He obtained his law degree from the University of Sherbrooke in 1980 and was admitted to the Québec bar in 1981.