Ontario’s First Poet Laureate Position Named in Honour of Gord Downie.

Private member's bill forever enshrined Downie's name into Provincial law.

One of the many talents of the late great Canadian Rock Icon Gord Downie was his ability to script some poetic tunes. On Thursday, a private member’s bill from Percy Hatfield, NDP MPPĀ for Windsor-Tecumseh, was officially passed and forever enshrined Downie’s name into Provincial law.

The Poet Laureate of Ontario Act was named in memory of Downie – who died at age 53 of an incurable form of brain cancer. The job description is to be an ambassador for poetry and literature in Ontario. 

There is already a poet laureate here in Canada and in many Ontario cities, including Barrie. The new role at the Ontario Legislature is meant to boost the profile of the province’s $27-billion arts sector.