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Profile: Jacques Duchesneau

Coalition Avenir Quebec legislature member Jacques Duchesneau comments on former Parti Quebecois minister Andre Boisclair, Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at the legislature in Quebec City.
Coalition Avenir Quebec legislature member Jacques Duchesneau comments on former Parti Quebecois minister Andre Boisclair, Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at the legislature in Quebec City. Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press

MONTREAL — Jacques Duchesneau’s star is about to shine brighter, as the anti-corruption czar announced on Sunday that he will run for the new federalist provincial party Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) (Coalition for Quebec’s Future) in Quebec’s Sept. 4 election.

Seen as a hero to many in the province, Duchesneau may offer hope to voters yearning for a political leader to believe in.

Global News looks at the man who many say could be a game changer for the CAQ and for the election race.

Career
Jacques Duchesneau holds a masters degree in Public Administration and has a doctorate (Ph. D.) from the Royal Military College of Canada.

He spent 30 years with the Montreal police department, becoming chief of police in 1994.

In 1996, he co-founded the Wolverines, an elite police force created to target biker gangs.

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Duchesneau then served as the first president and CEO of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority from 2002 to 2008.

He was later hired by Premier Jean Charest’s Liberal Party in 2010 to investigate allegations of corruption and collusion in the province’s construction industry.

Achievements
A Member of the Order of Canada and the recipient of a Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002, Duchesneau is a decorated public servant.

He is also a Knight of the Most Venerable Order of St. John, a recipient of the National Order of Quebec and the National Order of Merit of the French Republic and the Order of La Pléiade. He holds the Canadian Forces Decoration.

Charbonneau Commission Corruption hearings
Duchesneau was relieved of his duties as the head of Quebec’s anti-collusion squad – part of the broader anti-corruption police force known by its French acronym UPAC – last October.

His dismissal came just weeks after his damning report on corruption within Quebec’s Transportation Department was leaked to the media and he made public comments about the ineffectiveness of the UPAC.

This report intensified pressure on the Liberal government to call an official inquiry into allegations of corruption in Quebec’s construction industry and paved the way for the Charbonneau Commission.

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Hearings into allegations of corruption began in May of 2012 and Duchesneau was its star witness.

With files from the Canadian Press and the Montreal Gazette