|New Year sees new CEO’s at the helm at CN and VIA Rail Canada
On December 21, 2009, Canada's Transport Minister John Baird and the Honourable Rob Merrifield, Minister of State (Transport)
announced the appointment of Mr. Marc Laliberté as the new President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of VIA Rail Canada Inc. for
a term of four years, effective January 4, 2010. Mr. Laliberté replaces current President and CEO Mr. Paul Côté, who is retiring after
a successful 32-year career at VIA that includes a five-year term as CEO.
"I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Laliberté to the position of president and CEO," said Baird. "VIA Rail
provides a vital service to link our communities and I am confident that Mr. Laliberté's extensive experience in rail and business will
be a great asset to the corporation."
Mr. Laliberté holds a bachelor of science in engineering physics from Université Laval in Québec. Following four years as an
engineer with Hydro-Québec, as well as Gulf Canada Ltd., Laliberté began his railway career in 1980 with Canadian National
Railways (CN), where he held increasingly senior roles ranging from Mechanical Engineer to Director of Intermodal Operations. In
1994, Laliberté was appointed President and CEO of AMF Technotransport Inc., a fully owned subsidiary of CN specializing in the
renovation and repair of railway equipment. He was promoted in 1996 to General Manager of CN's Eastern Canada Champlain
District. In 1999, he joined as President and General Manager of Vapor Rail Inc., a company specializing in the development and
marketing of door systems for passenger rail service. In 2003, he became President and CEO of Québec Railway Corporation, which
had the distinction of being both the largest Canadian-owned shortline railway and the largest shortline railway company operating
in Eastern Canada.
The New Year also saw a change of leadership at CN, where Hunter Harrison, who has been CN’s President and CEO since January
1, 2003, retired from the Company and was replaced by CN’s Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Claude Mongeau
effective January 1, 2010.
Mongeau, 47, has held successively senior positions since joining CN in 1994. The announcement of Mr. Mongeau replacing Harrison
was made by CN Board of Directors Chairman David McLean on April 21, 2009 during the Company’s annual general meeting of
shareholders held in Calgary, Alberta.
CAW National President Ken Lewenza expressed good wishes on behalf of the CAW membership to outgoing Presidents and CEO’s
of VIA and CN - Côté and Harrison - as well as their successors, Laliberté and Mongeau respectively.