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McDonald, Alexander Hamilton (1919–80)

Alexander Hamilton McDonald.
Saskatchewan Archives Board PS64-201-07

“Hammy” McDonald was born on March 16, 1919, and grew up in Fleming. In World War II, he served as a flight lieutenant for the RCAF from 1940 to 1945. He married Madeline Anne Casey and they had three children. McDonald worked as a farmer and later became a businessman in Moosomin and Regina. He was active locally in the Canadian Legion, the Caterpillar Club, and the United Church. McDonald won the Moosomin constituency for the Liberals in the 1948 provincial election. He held this seat for five consecutive elections from 1948 to 1963 and resigned on May 25, 1965. McDonald was leader of the Liberal Party from 1954 to 1959. Following his role as Opposition leader in the Saskatchewan Legislature, McDonald was provincial Agriculture Minister and Deputy Premier in Premier Ross Thatcher’s Cabinet. Before finishing the term, McDonald resigned his seat. Less than three months later, Pierre Trudeau summoned McDonald to the Senate. He served on a number of committees and represented Canada as a member of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. In 1968 McDonald participated on the National Capital Commission. In the fall of 1968, McDonald was appointed deputy government leader in the Senate, making him responsible for steering all legislation through the Senate. By 1969 McDonald added chief whip to his list of responsibilities. McDonald died on March 31, 1980, shortly after delivering a speech in the Senate.

Erika Dyck

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