Paul Thomson joined Veterans Affairs Canada in 2013 and has worked in various areas of the Department, including Communications and Service Delivery Divisions. He became Director General of Commemoration Division in 2019. He is based out of Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC)’s head office in Charlottetown, PEI. Prior to joining VAC, Paul worked in municipal government, and not-for-profit and private sectors.
In his role as DG, Commemoration, Paul oversees a team of professionals at VAC who are committed to honouring the service and sacrifice of Canadian Veterans. He has led commemorative events including the 75th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy; the 75th anniversary of the Italian Campaign; significant Korean War milestones; the Battles of the Somme and Beaumont-Hamel; National Peacekeepers’ Day and VJ-Day/End of the Second World War.
His team oversees the maintenance and operations of 14 memorials in Europe, including the Canadian National Vimy Memorial and the Beaumont Hamel Newfoundland memorial sites. In Canada, the Commemoration team operates and maintains two Veterans’ cemeteries, Fort Massey in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Veterans’ Cemetery (God’s Acre) in Esquimalt, British Columbia. In addition, amongst other things, his team develops education materials for teachers, manages a community engagement and memorial funding program, and works with contractors to ensure our Veteran grave markers, both overseas and in Canada, are well-maintained.
Paul has a Master’s in Public Administration from Dalhousie University and an honours degree in Political Science and French from Carleton University. Paul and his wife, Joeanne, have two sons, Joe and Luke, and their dog, Betty.