Pauline Vanier

Georges Vanier Montreal Ottawa
Pauline Vanier
Social. Col & Mrs Vanier BAnQ P48S1P05925.jpg
Georges and Pauline Vanier in 1940
Pauline Archer

(1898-03-28)March 28, 1898
DiedMarch 23, 1991(1991-03-23) (aged 92)
Resting placeMemorial Chapel at Citadelle, Quebec
Spouse(s)Georges Vanier, husband (September 29, 1921–March 5, 1967)

Pauline Vanier, PC, CC, DStJ (March 28, 1898 – March 23, 1991), born Pauline Archer in Montreal, was a Canadian who was married to Georges Vanier, who was one of Canada's first professional diplomats, Canada's first ambassador to France and Canada's first Canadian-born French-speaking Governor General of Canada from 1959 until his death in March 1967.

Life and career

She was the daughter of Thérèse (de Salaberry) and Charles Archer, a judge on the Quebec superior court. Her mother was a descendant of officer Charles-Michel d’Irumberry de Salaberry.[1] With her extensive diplomatic experience, Pauline filled the role of vice-regal consort with as much distinction as her husband filled his. Georges and Pauline Vanier created the Vanier Institute of the Family in 1965.[2]

Madame Vanier was the first non-political woman to be appointed to the Queen's Privy Council for Canada. She was sworn in on April 11, 1967 as a sign of honour from Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson. In July that same year she was made one of the first Companions of the Order of Canada for her humanitarian work. She was appointed the Chancellor of the University of Ottawa in 1966.

The couple had five children. Their son Jean founded L'Arche and their daughter Thérèse was a medical doctor who specialized in haematology and palliative care. Both Madame Vanier and her husband Georges have been nominated for beatification[when?] in the Roman Catholic Church because of their piety and love for humanity.[3]


The sign at Pauline Vanier Park in Ottawa

A Catholic elementary school in Brampton, Ontario is named in her honor, as well as an Ottawa middle school. Madame Vanier Hall, a women's residence at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick, also bears her name. In 1963, London Children's Aid, and Catholic Social Services groups got together, and created the "Madame Vanier Children's Services". Pauline Vanier Park in Ottawa is named in her honour.


  1. ^ "Pauline Vanier | The Canadian Encyclopedia". Retrieved May 7, 2019.
  2. ^ The Canadian Encyclopedia, page about the Vanier Institute of the Family.
  3. ^ "General The Right Honourable Georges Philias Vanier". Governor General of Canada. Retrieved 17 March 2013.