Jean Drapeau


Jean Drapeau 1916-1999

1978 Economic Economic

Jean Drapeau was born in Montréal on February 18, 1916. He studied at the Saint-Jean-de-Brébeuf and Le Plateau schools. He earned a licence in social sciences, economics and politics at Université de Montréal in 1937. A student in the faculty of law in 1938, he received his bachelor of laws in 1941 and was called to the Montréal Bar in 1943.

Elected mayor of Montréal for an initial mandate from 1954 to 1957, founder of the Parti civique de Montréal in 1960 and named Queen’s Counsel in 1961, Mr. Drapeau was re-elected mayor of Montréal in 1960, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1978 and 1982.

Mr. Drapeau’s impact, both on the Montréal scene and the Québec political scene, was felt internationally. We owe him such major achievements as the Place des Arts, the Montréal metro, Expo’ 67, the 1976 Montréal summer Olympic Games and the first international flower show in North America, the Floralies internationales, in 1980.

Mr. Drapeau also distinguished himself by making Montréal the site for the coveted exhibitions Ramsès II and his times, treasures and splendours of China and The gold of Thrace.

Mr.Drapeau received many awards and honours including doctorates from Université de Moncton, Université de Montréal, McGill University, Sir George Williams University, Université Laval and the Institut Goswell. In 1965, the departments of trade and industry of the ten Canadian provinces awarded him the trophy for the Canadian who had done the most for industrial development in Canada. He also received the gold medal from the Architectural Institute of Canada in 1967. The same year, he was made a Companion of the Order of Canada.

Mr. Drapeau was named a Commander of France’s Legion of Honour in 1984.

Mr. Drapeau was made a special ambassador to UNESCO in Paris in December 1986 by the Government of Canada. He was named a member of the academy of Great Montrealers in 1978.

Source: Ordre national du Québec

Photo Credit : Harry Palmer / Bibliothèque et Archives Canada / PA-182371