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Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick
MLA Bios - 56th Legislature
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Thomas J. Burke, Q.C.
MLA, Fredericton-Nashwaaksis

Thomas J. Burke (known by friends as T.J.) was born in Los Angeles, Calif., in 1972. In 1978, his family relocated to Fredericton, where Burke spent his childhood on the city's north side.

He graduated from Fredericton High School in 1990. After graduation, he enlisted in the United States Military and served as a paratrooper and forward observer for an infantry company with the 82nd Airborne Division based at Fort Bragg, N.C. He was honourably discharged in 1995.

Upon his return to Fredericton, he successfully completed the Bachelor of Arts degree program at the University of New Brunswick. He continued his studies and received a Bachelor of Laws Degree from Dalhousie University.

A Liberal MLA, he was first elected to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick in the June 9, 2003, provincial election to represent the constituency of Fredericton North. As a member of the official Opposition, he was the critic for interests relating to Aboriginal affairs, energy, and justice. He was a member of the standing committees on private bills and Law amendments. He also served on the select committee on public automobile insurance.

He was re-elected in the Sept. 18, 2006, provincial election as the member for the new electoral district of Fredericton-Nashwaaksis. He was sworn in as attorney general and as minister of justice and consumer affairs; he subsequently served as minister of environment. He chairs the standing committee on law amendments.

He lives in Fredericton, where he formerly practised law as a partner with Gaffney & Burke. He has argued at every level of court in Canada, including as lead counsel in the matter of Her Majesty the Queen v. Darrell Gray at the Supreme Court of Canada in 2006, which was successfully rendered in October of 2006.

He is married to Tanya (née Atkinson) of Miramichi, and they have three daughters: Ashley, Molly and Cindy.
Last updated : 5/13/2010