Edward (Ed) Joseph Doherty was elected to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick in a by election on November 14, 2005, to fill a vacancy in the riding of Saint John Harbour. He has been active in the Liberal Party at both the provincial and federal levels for more than 30 years. He was reelected in the September 18, 2006, provincial election and was appointed Minister of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour and Minister responsible for Aboriginal Affairs Secretariat. On November 12, 2008, he was appointed Minister of Supply and Services. He was reelected to the Legislative Assembly on September 22, 2014, as the Member for Saint John Harbour. He was appointed Minister of Government Services, Minister responsible for Aboriginal Affairs and Minister responsible for the Economic and Social Inclusion Corporation.
He was born May 22, 1949, in Moncton, the son of Marion (McMackin) and Joseph Doherty. He spent his childhood in Bridgedale, a small community that is now part of Riverview. He is the eldest of five children.
Mr. Doherty graduated from Moncton High School in 1967 and completed his pre-med studies at St. Francis Xavier University in 1970, receiving his medical degree from Dalhousie University in 1974, when he was valedictorian of his class. He completed his medical internship at the Jewish General Hospital in Montreal. He was a family physician in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, from 1975 to 1980. In 1980, he continued his studies, specializing in ophthalmology at Dalhousie University. From 1984 until his retirement in 2006, he was a consulting ophthalmologist in uptown Saint John. As well, he served as a lecturer on the staff of the department of ophthalmology at Dalhousie University and as a visiting ophthalmologist at Princess Margaret Hospital on the Island of Dominica in the eastern Caribbean.
Recently, he has worked with Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick, as Unit Head for Ophthalmology, mentor for medical students, physician examiner, professional competency tutor, and lecturer. Mr. Doherty also serves as a member of the Political Action Committee of the Canadian Medical Association.
Several of his research papers have been published in the Canadian Ophthalmological Society Journal and Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science. His most recent work involved working with a team of researchers from the Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard University to study a New Brunswick family with a rare eye condition known as congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles. The team was successful in identifying the gene causing this disorder.
He was consulting eye physician for the Saint John Flames, a franchise team of the American Hockey League, from 1994 to 2003, and, for the past several years he has been a volunteer ophthalmologist on Dominica under the auspices of Rotary International.
He has many professional memberships, including the Canadian Medical Association, New Brunswick Medical Society, St. Francis Xavier Alumni Association Saint John, Dalhousie University Medical Alumni Association, the Royal Society of the Arts and the Golden Key International Honour Society. He is listed in the 2005 edition of Canadian Who’s Who.
He has held numerous executive positions in a variety of organizations, including the University of New Brunswick Board of Governors, the New Brunswick Museum board of directors, and the St. Joseph’s Hospital board of directors. He is a past member of the Saint John Business Community Anti-Poverty Initiative, the Saint Patrick’s Society, the Asia—Pacific Foundation of Canada and the New Brunswick Museum. He is honoured to have been a founding member of L’Arche group home for the mentally challenged, based on the philosophy of Jean Vanier. He is also proud of having championed a daycare facility in an inner city Saint John school, where single mothers or fathers could attend school while their child attended daycare in the same school or one nearby.
He has been honoured for his contributions to the community. He was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal (2003), the Paul Harris Fellow Award through the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International, and the YM-YWCA Saint John Red Triangle Award (1999). He was inducted into the St. Francis Xavier University Hall of Honour in 2004.
An athlete, Mr. Doherty enjoys skiing, swimming, sailing, handcycling, kayaking, scuba-diving, golfing, and salmon fishing. He has completed the New York City Marathon, the Dublin City Marathon and Marathon by the Sea in Saint John on numerous occasions. He has enjoyed sailing and kayaking the waters off Eastern Canada and the Caribbean. He enjoys competing in annual charity golf tournaments and has competed as a swimmer at the World Masters Swim Championship in Montreal. He is a collector of Canadian stamps, Canadian antiques, and family genealogy.
Mr. Doherty, and his wife, the former Mary Reid of Newcastle (now Miramichi), have three children. Their daughter, Dr. Teresa, and her husband, Michael Caplice of Toronto, have four children: Dennis, Sam, Sophie, and Layla. Their son, Robert Hynes, and his wife, the former Beth Pickup of Quispamsis, live in Burlington, Ontario, with two children, Emmerson and Greyson. Their daughter, Catherine (Dr. Jason Bussey), is a lawyer with the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy Canada. Mr. Doherty has four sisters: Jo-Ann Thorburn of Calgary, Karen LeBlanc of Fredericton, Margaret Ann Lamb of Halifax, and Elaine Frances of Riverview. He is proud of his many nieces and nephews.