It is my honour to rise in the house today, to offer congratulations to former Provincial Court Judge Michael McKee, who has taken a well-deserved retirement from the bench, effective last week.

Many of my colleagues would be familiar with Judge McKee’s work with New Brunswick’s provincial court for the past 22 years.

Some of my younger colleagues may not realize that before taking a seat on the Bench, Mike McKee was a Liberal MLA who served in this assembly for 19 years and was a cabinet minister under former premier Frank McKenna.

Mike McKee was elected five times as the MLA for Moncton North and he served as minister of labour and minister of multiculturalism from 1987 to 1991.

Mike McKee was educated at St. Thomas University, the University of New Brunswick and the Holy Heart Seminary.

He was a parish priest in Moncton for a number of years and was the chaplain at the Dorchester Penitentiary for four years.

Mike eventually left the priesthood and married his wife Winnie in 1982.

Judge McKee looks forward to spending more time with Winnie and their two children – Sheila and Robert – and their two young grandchildren.

An avid sports fan, he also looks forward to cheering on his beloved Montreal Canadiens and Pittsburgh Steelers.

I ask my colleagues on both sides of the House to join me in wishing a happy retirement to Provincial Court Judge Mike McKee.