On November 27th, Paul E. Labbé passed away peacefully after a seven year battle with myelofibrosis. Paul was a principled man of high energy and big ideas who led by example.
Loved by all, a devoted husband, father and grandfather, he is survived by his wife, Grace, his five children, Paule (Nik Nanos), Marc (Jaqui Cadieux), Phil (Lisa Jamrozinski), David (Emily Borse), Robert (Mary Ellis) and his 13 grandchildren James, Jordan, Greg, Bernadette, Paul, Marc, Norman, Liam, Evelyn, Arthur, Margot, Edwin and Francis. Predeceased by his brother Marc, his sister Margot, and beloved granddaughter Reese. He leaves behind his sisters Lucille Simard and Suzanne Labbé, and many nieces, nephews, and in-laws.
Born in Buckingham, Quebec to Dorothy Gorman-Labbé and Judge Arthur Labbé, Paul graduated from McGill University in 1964 with a degree in law.
He started his career as a Trade Commissioner in the Canadian Embassy in Paris (1966-69), then served as chief of staff to the Hon. Jean-Luc Pépin, Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce (1969-72). He was a founding member of Interimco, a private international trading company (1972-80). He returned to the federal government to run the Canadian Industrial Renewal Board. In 1985, he was appointed to establish and lead Investment Canada. He was President of Export Development Canada (1991-97) and Chairman and CEO of Citibank Canada (1997-2000). In his retirement, he served on several public and nonprofit boards, including as Director of the Dundee Wealth Bank, President of the Rideau Club, Chair of the Schulich School of Business International Advisory Council, on the Saint Patrick’s Basilica restoration committee, and Pallium Canada.
Paul was a devout Catholic, with an appetite for intellectual pursuits. He was happiest pushing the limits of conventional road travel, cutting a rug with his wife, playing shinny hockey with his grandchildren and enjoying a good meal with family.
Family and friends are invited to visit at the Central Chapel of Hulse, Playfair & McGarry, 315 McLeod Street (at O’Connor) Ottawa, on Tuesday, December 3rd from 2-4pm and 6-8pm. Funeral Mass to be Celebrated at Saint Patrick’s Basilica, 220 Kent Street (at Nepean) Ottawa, on Wednesday, December 4th , 2019 at 10am. In lieu of flowers, please become a blood donor.