Usher of the Black Rod (Canada)

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Kevin MacLeod as Black Rod before the thrones in the Senate chamber, 2009

The Usher of the Black Rod (often shortened to Black Rod; French: Huissier du Bâton Noir) is the most senior protocol position in the Parliament of Canada.

The office is modelled on the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod of the House of Lords in the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Black Rod leads the Speaker's Parade at the beginning of each sitting of the Senate[1] and oversees protocol and administrative and logistical details of important events taking place on Parliament Hill, such as the opening of parliament and the Speech from the Throne.[2][3] Upon the appointment of the first woman to the position of Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod on 20 October 1997, the title was changed to Usher of the Black Rod.[4]

The usher carries an ebony and gold staff modelled on that used in the House of Lords. The top consists of a crown and crest bearing the words Honi soit qui mal y pense and motif for George IV of the United Kingdom.

List of Gentlemen Ushers of the Black Rod[edit]

List of Ushers of the Black Rod[edit]


  1. ^ Parliament of Canada. "The Senate Speaker's Parade". Queen's Printer for Canada. Retrieved 26 January 2009.
  2. ^ "Ushered out". Political Bytes. CBC. 18 January 2008. Retrieved 24 January 2008.
  3. ^ "Notice of Vacancy, Usher of the Black Rod" (PDF). Canada Gazette Part I. Queen's Printer for Canada. 142 (2). 12 January 2008.
  4. ^ Parliament of Canada. "Officers and Officials of Parliament". Queen's Printer for Canada. Retrieved 24 January 2008.
  5. ^ a b Parliament of Canada. "Procedural Officers and Senior Officials: Senate". Queen's Printer for Canada.

External links[edit]