New Brunswick Federation of Labour
Founded1913; 111 years ago (1913)
HeadquartersMoncton, New Brunswick
Key people
Daniel Légère, President

The New Brunswick Federation of Labour is the New Brunswick provincial trade union federation of the Canadian Labour Congress. In 2019 it reported a membership of more than 35,000.


The New Brunswick Federation of Labour was organized at a meeting of union delegates in Saint John on 16 September 1913, making it the third provincial federation of labour to be established in Canada, after British Columbia and Alberta.[1] James L. Sugrue of Saint John was elected as president. In early 1914 the Federation obtained a charter from the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada. In 1956 delegates voted to join its successor, the Canadian Labour Congress.

The Federation of Labour's first major achievement was a provincial Workmen's Compensation Act (1918), which was based on insurance principles and administered by a board with labour representation. The Federation has a long record of support for social reforms that protect the rights of union members and promote the interests of the province's working class.[2]

The NBFL is composed of unionized workers within the province, having representatives attending its conventions from almost every community in New Brunswick where a labour organization exists. In addition to its growth in size and influence since its beginnings, the Federation has benefited from greater diversity in membership, especially the participation of francophones, women and public sector workers.

The NBFL is now Labour's central voice in New Brunswick. Although the Federation does not directly bargain on behalf of union members, it encourages workers to join to ensure fair and safe workplaces and to build solidarity and mutual support among workers.

Executive Officers

Executive Officers through History[3][4]
Year(s) President Secretary-Treasurer


1914–1918 James L. SUGRUE P. D. AYER
1918–1920 Célime A. MELANSON George R. MELVIN
1921–1928 James E. TIGHE George R. MELVIN
1929–1932 Eugene R. STEEVES George R. MELVIN
1933 James A. WHITEBONE George R. MELVIN
1934 James E. TIGHE George R. MELVIN
1935–1953 James A. WHITEBONE George R. MELVIN
1954 James A. WHITEBONE Lee A. SMITH
1955–1958 James A. WHITEBONE William F. MCCARLIE
1959 Angus MACLEOD James H. LEONARD
1960–1962 James A. WHITEBONE Yvon LANCTIN
1964–1966 John F. MACMILLAN Valerie BOURGEOIS
1967–1968 Paul LEPAGE Valerie BOURGEOIS
1969–1972 Paul LEPAGE Gregory MURPHY
1973–1979 Paul LEPAGE Alvin G. BLAKELY
1980 Phillip BOOKER Jean THEBEAU
1981 Larry HANLEY J. Albert RICHARDSON
1982–1986 Timothy MCCARTHY J. Albert RICHARDSON
1987–1990 Timothy MCCARTHY Maurice CLAVETTE
1991–1994 John MCEWEN Maurice CLAVETTE
1995–1996 Bob HICKES  Maurice CLAVETTE
1997–1998 Tom STEEP Maurice CLAVETTE 
1999–2000 Blair DOUCET Maurice CLAVETTE 
2001–2004 Blair DOUCET Terry CARTER
2005–2006 Michel BOUDREAU Terry CARTER
2007–2010 Michel BOUDREAU Danny KING
2011–2012 Michel BOUDREAU John GAGNON
2013–2014 Patrick COLFORD John GAGNON
2015–2019 Patrick COLFORD Charles ROUSE


  1. ^ Frank, David (2013). Provincial Solidarities: A History of the New Brunswick Federation of Labour. Edmonton: Athabasca University Press. ISBN 978-1-927356-23-4.
  2. ^ "Organized Labour and the Making of Public Policy in Twentieth-Century New Brunswick". Journal of New Brunswick Studies, vol. 2 (2011).
  3. ^ "New Brunswick Federation of Labour".
  4. ^ "Executive Officers of the New Brunswick Federation of Labour". Labour History in New Brunswick website.