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Edmonton businesswoman named Alberta lieutenant-governor, first Muslim in role in Canada

Edmonton businesswoman Salma Lakhani to be Alberta’s next lieutenant-governor
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has named business owner and philanthropist Salma Lakhani as the next person to represent the Queen in Alberta. As Quinn Ohler explains, Lakhani will become Canada's first Muslim lieutenant-governor when she formally takes over the role.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has named business owner and philanthropist Salma Lakhani as Alberta’s new lieutenant-governor.

When she formally takes over the role, Lakhani will become Canada’s first Muslim lieutenant-governor.

She replaces Lois Mitchell as the Queen’s representative in the province.

Lakhani has been long recognized for her work and philanthropy in a range of fields, including health care and human rights.

Lt.-Gov. Lois Mitchell thanks Albertans for COVID-19 response
Lt.-Gov. Lois Mitchell thanks Albertans for COVID-19 response

She has mentored young students with English as a second language and helped steer a committee dedicated to helping vulnerable women gain access to education.

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Lakhani was born in Uganda and has an honours degree in clinical biochemistry from the University of Manchester.

She has been in Edmonton for more than 40 years, owning and operating an early childhood education centre.

In 2005, she was awarded the Alberta Centennial Medal for outstanding achievements in the province. And in 2012, she was awarded the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal honouring service to Canada.

Read more: Lois Mitchell formally installed as new lieutenant-governor of Alberta

Lieutenant-governors, the highest-ranking officers in each province, carry out a variety of official duties including swearing in the premier and cabinet, opening each session of the legislative assembly and signing bills into laws.

“Ms. Lakhani is devoted to supporting people in her community, from new immigrants and young people, to women and families,” Trudeau said in a news release Tuesday.

“As lieutenant-governor of Alberta, I know she will serve the people of her province and our country well, and continue to be a source of inspiration for all Canadians.”