First elected to Parliament in 1988, Jerry Pickard was re-elected with in 1993, 1997, and 2000. Popular and well-known for his commitment to his constituents, Mr. Pickard is regularly lauded for his integrity, accessibility and willingness to tackle the hard issues.
Prime Minister Paul Martin recognized Mr. Pickard’s talents in 2003 when he appointed him Parliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Prime Minister with special emphasis on Border Issues.
His impressive Parliamentary career includes serving as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services.
He also served as Chair of the Agriculture and Agri-Food Committee, Vice-Chair for the Citizenship and Immigration Committee, and member on many committees, including Natural Resources, Industry, Foreign Affairs, and Procedure and House Affairs. For seven years, he also served as Southwestern Ontario Caucus Chair.
Mr. Pickard holds a BA and a M.Ed. from the University of Windsor. He taught for 26 years with the Kent County and Essex County Boards of Education, and entered politics in 1974 when he was elected to the Kingsville Municipal Council, serving until 1988 as Councillor, Deputy Reeve and Mayor.
Born in Chatham, Ontario, Mr. O’Brien and his wife, Caroline, are both active in the community, and regularly support many charitable and service organizations.