Born Huguette Rochon on 15 April 1939 in Rockland, Ontario, she obtained a Bachelor’s degree in nursing sciences (1960), a Master’s degree in education (1968) and a Doctor’s degree in education (1980) from the University of Ottawa. She and her husband, Royal Labelle, have two children. She held management positions in health education and nursing sciences education between 1960 and 1973, and was a senior manager in the Departments of Indian and Northern Affairs and National Health and Welfare between 1973 and 1980. From 1974 to 1976, she was a health services planning and health sciences education consultant to the governments of Haiti and Cuba. She was Undersecretary of State from 1980 to 1985, Associate Cabinet Secretary and Deputy Clerk of the Privy Council in 1985. She chaired the Public Service Commission from 1985 to 1990, and served as Deputy Minister of Transport from 1990 to 1993. From 1993 to 1999, she was president of the Canadian International Development Agency and the deputy head of the Millennium Bureau of Canada in 1998. She has served numerous organizations -- as president: Transparency International, Canadian Red Cross, Ottawa General Hospital, Ottawa Health Sciences Centre, Transport Association of Canada, Algonquin College, United Way Ottawa-Carleton, Institute of Management Consultants, Canadian Nurses Association; as vice-president: China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development, Special Group on health policies and development of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Canadian Safety Council; as member: Board of Governors of the International Development Research Centre, Board of Directors for Export Development Canada, International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development, Board of Governors of Carleton University and McGill University, International Aviation Management Training Institute, Canadian Comprehensive Audit Foundation, Public Policy Forum, Collegium of Work and Learning, Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, International Health Service Collaborative, Institute of Public Administration of Canada and organizing committee of the Youth Employment Summit. In addition to being Chancellor of the University of Ottawa since 1994, she is a member of numerous organizations: Council of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, Board of Directors of the International Institute for Sustainable Development, Katimavik, CRC Sogema, African Virtual University, State of the World Forum, Canadian Management Centre, Corporate Social Responsibility Advisory Council of Export Development Canada, Canadian Bureau for International Education, COADY International Institute and New York University/Wagner. She chairs the Board of Directors of the Financial Services OmbudsNetwork, as well as the E7 Scholarship Selection Committee. In addition, she is a member of the World Commission on Globalization. She has received honorary Doctorates from numerous universities: Brock, Saskatchewan, Carleton, Ottawa, York, Mount St. Vincent, Windsor, Manitoba, Saint-Paul and St. Francis Xavier. She is a Companion of the Order of Canada, a recipient of the Vanier Medal from the Institute of Public Administration of Canada, an Outstanding Achievement Award from the Public Service of Canada, a McGill University Management Achievement Award, the Ordre de la Pléiade, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award from the YMCA-YWCA (2009).