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William F.A.Turgeon

The Honourable William Ferdinand-Alfonse Turgeon

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1921 - 1938   Justice of the Court of Appeal for Saskatchewan
1938 - 1941   Chief Justice of Saskatchewan

William F.A. Turgeon was born in 1877 in Petit-Rocher, New Brunswick, and was raised in New York. In 1893 he attended the Collège de Lévis in Quebec, and in 1900 he received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Laval University. He apprenticed with a law firm in Saint John and was called to the New Brunswick bar in 1902.

Mr. Turgeon was drawn to Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, because of the prospects it held for a young, bilingual lawyer. At the time, Prince Albert was the judicial centre for the North-West Territories. He moved there in 1903 and founded a law practice. He served as a crown prosecutor and also as Prince Albert’s first city solicitor until he entered politics. At the age of 30, he became Saskatchewan’s second Attorney General. He served as Attorney General from 1907 until 1921.

In 1921, Mr. Turgeon was appointed to the Court of Appeal, and in 1938 he was appointed Chief Justice of Saskatchewan. He served as Chief Justice until 1941, when Prime Minister King asked him to resign from the Court of Appeal and take up a challenging diplomatic post in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He went on to have a distinguished diplomatic career, serving as the first Canadian ambassador to Chile and as Canadian ambassador to five other countries.

The Honourable William F.A. Turgeon served on twelve federal and provincial Royal Commissions and was a recipient of the Order of Canada. He passed away on January 11, 1969. Shortly after his death, W.F.A. Turgeon School in Prince Albert was named in his honour.

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