Noble Villeneuve

Noble Villeneuve
Ontario MPP
In office
Preceded by Osie Villeneuve
Succeeded by Riding abolished
Constituency Stormont—Dundas—Glengarry
Personal details
Born (1938-08-01) August 1, 1938
Cornwall, Ontario
Political party Progressive Conservative
Relations Osie Villeneuve (cousin)
Roxane Villeneuve Robertson (daughter)
Occupation Farmer

Noble Villeneuve (born August 1, 1938) is a former politician in Ontario, Canada. He was a Progressive Conservative member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1983 to 1999, and served as a cabinet minister in the governments of Frank Miller and Mike Harris.


Villeneuve did not attend university, and worked as a farmer and real estate appraiser after graduating from high school. He served as First Vice-President of the Ontario Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers.


He was elected to the Ontario legislature in a by-election held on December 15, 1983, called after the death of Osie Villeneuve, a distant cousin. Running in the riding of Stormont—Dundas—Glengarry, he defeated Liberal candidate Johnny Whitteker by more than 4,000 votes.[1] He was re-elected by about the same margin in the 1985 provincial election.[2] He endorsed Dennis Timbrell for the party leadership in 1985.

The Progressive Conservative government of Frank Miller was re-elected in the 1985 election, but was reduced to minority status. Villeneuve was appointed to cabinet as a minister without portfolio on May 17, 1985, but accomplished little in this position before the PC government was defeated in the house a month later.[3] For the party's November 1985 leadership convention, he shifted his support from Timbrell to Larry Grossman.[4] In the 1987 election, Villeneuve defeated his Liberal opponent by only 607 votes.[5] He was re-elected by a greater margin in the 1990 election,[6] and won a landslide victory in the 1995 election as his party returned to power with a majority government.[7]

Villeneuve was appointed Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs with responsibility for Francophone Affairs on June 26, 1995.[8] He held these positions until the 1999 election, and generally avoided the controversies which affected other ministries. Villeneuve was not regarded as one of the more right-wing figures in the Harris cabinet, though his government presided over considerable funding cutbacks in the agriculture department and the elimination of local representatives. (It may be noted that there were targeted funding increases in some areas.)

In 1996, the Harris government reduced the number of provincial ridings from 130 to 103. This change meant that a number of sitting Members of Provincial Parliament had to compete against one another for re-election. Villeneuve faced incumbent Liberal John Cleary in the new riding of Stormont—Dundas—Charlottenburgh, and lost by only 562 votes in a closely watched contest.[9]

Cabinet positions

Provincial Government of Mike Harris
Cabinet Post (1)
Predecessor Office Successor
Elmer Buchanan Minister of Agriculture and Food
Also responsible for Francophone Affairs
Ernie Hardeman

After politics

In 2000, Villeneuve was appointed a Justice of the Peace. However he suffered a non-fatal stroke in 2002 which sidelined him from that job.[10][11]

Other information


  1. "Conservative wins by-election handily in Eastern Ontario". The Globe and Mail. December 16, 1983. p. 12.
  2. "Results of vote in Ontario election". The Globe and Mail. May 3, 1985. p. 13.
  3. "The new Cabinet". The Globe and Mail. May 18, 1985. p. 11.
  4. Christie, Alan (October 15, 1985). "Grossman draws Tories left, right, centre". Toronto Star. p. A1.
  5. "Results from individual ridings". The Windsor Star. September 11, 1987. p. F2.
  6. "Ontario election: Riding-by-riding voting results". The Globe and Mail. September 7, 1990. p. A12.
  7. "Summary of Valid Ballots by Candidate". Elections Ontario. June 8, 1995. Retrieved 2014-03-02.
  8. "Mike Harris' cabinet". The Spectator. Hamilton, Ont. June 27, 1995. p. A7.
  9. "Summary of Valid Ballots by Candidate". Elections Ontario. June 3, 1999. Retrieved 2014-03-02.
  10. Guly, Christopher (February 13, 2003). "Cain signs on as justice of the peace". The Ottawa Citizen. p. D3.
  11. Tobin, Anne-Marie (August 26, 2010). "One in 6 caregivers to ailing seniors in Canada is in distress: study". The Canadian Press.
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