We are sorry to announce the passing of Robert Martineau, former President of the National Council of Canada. He passed away peacefully at Lakeridge Hospital on Thursday, November 24, 2016 in his 95th year. He was President of the National Council of Canada from 1983 to 1995. Sincere condolences to his family, his friends and the entire Vincentian family.
Bro. Martineau began his involvement in the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in April. 1963 when he joined Our Lady of Fatima Conference in Scarborough. Bro. Martineau served as President of Our Lady of Fatima Conference for seven years, 1971, served the Scarborough Particular Council as Vice-President for one year (1972), President for five years (1977). Later he was elected President for Ontario Provincial Council for a term of 5 years (1977 – 1982).
In the meantime, Bro. Martineau served on the Toronto Central Council Board of Directors as Secretary and Chairman of several committees as well as on the National Board of Directors. As President of the Ontario Provincial Council, he worked for the expansion and renewal of the Society throughout Ontario. Many new Conferences were formed and new Councils instituted notably in Thunder Bay, Peterborough, as well as Kitchener. He represented the Ontario Provincial Council as one of the 8 official delegates from Canada at the International Council Meeting held in Paris, France.
Being bilingual Bro. Martineau felt that God was directing him to serve the National Council of Canada and the whole Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Canada. His previous experience at practically all levels of the Society was an asset for him, in the development of the Society in Canada.
The investiture of Bro. Martineau as National President took place at St. Joseph High school in Toronto May, 1983. Upon being confirmed of his election, Bro. Martineau pledge to do his utmost to promote unity between our two cultures, to work for expansion of our Society throughout Canada and to provide better communication.