Michel Horgan is a senior advisor with the law firm Bennett Jones LLP, where he advises clients on a range of economic, financial sector, energy, and environment issues. Before joining Bennett Jones, Horgan enjoyed a 36-year career in the public service of Canada, where he served as deputy minister of four departments, including the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Indian and Northern Affairs, and Environment Canada. He retired from the public service in April 2014 after five years as deputy minister of finance.
As deputy minister of finance, Horgan led the department responsible for federal fiscal and tax policy, the legislation and regulation of the financial sector, tariff policy, international economic and financial relations, and major transfers to Canada's provinces. He provided strategic advice to the government on a wide range of economic and financial issues and he led the preparation of six federal budgets. He is conversant in most topics of economic and financial interest in the country.
Much of Horgan's career has been spent on energy and environment issues. He worked on the Clark government's energy policy, the Trudeau government's National Energy Program, the Mulroney government's Green Plan, and the Harper government's climate change policy. Over the years, he has had extensive dealings with the oil and gas sector, and he was the federal government's chief negotiator for the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline for several years. As deputy minister of Indian and Northern Affairs for three years, Horgan helped negotiate the Kelowna Accord and worked on such issues as First Nations education, residential school reconciliation, treaty rights and land claims, and Aboriginal economic development.
Horgan has also held the positions of G7/G20 finance deputy for Canada and executive director for Canada, Ireland and the Caribbean on the board of the International Monetary Fund. He has served on a number of Crown corporation boards, including those of the Bank of Canada, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation, Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation, and Export Development Canada.
Horgan presently serves on the board of directors of several institutes and foundations. The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation appointed him a Trudeau mentor in 2016.