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B.C.'s new lieutenant-governor brings rancher's perspective

11/02/2012 04:47 EDT | Updated 01/02/2013 05:12 EST
British Columbia rancher Judith Guichon has officially been sworn in as the province's 29th lieutenant-governor, saying she plans to bring a rural perspective to the position.

At the legislature in Victoria on Friday she told an assembly of dignitaries, including Premier Christy Clark and federal Heritage Minister James Moore, that she believes a healthy society relies on the health of its soil, and she'll make sure beef is served as a main course at Government House.

Guichon, who operates a ranch in the Nicola Valley and is a former president of the B.C. Cattleman's Association, says she there is much B.C. can learn by going back to the basics.

"As generations become further removed from an agrarian lifestyle, and as we lose community, I fear that civil society becomes less civil. It is at our peril that the great cities of the world forget that civilization relies on the health of the soils upon which it rests."

She says many of B.C.'s ranchers trace their arrival in the province back to the Cariboo gold rush, but ended up staying because of the grasslands.

"Our children need to understand the great resources we have under our feet and the important of protecting them so that we can continue to value the beauty that is British Columbia and so that we can protect our value for future generations."

Guichon was appointed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and takes over for Steven Point who served as Lieutenant Governor for the past five years.

The role is mostly ceremonial, but Guichon will have several important powers, including giving royal assent to any new legislation.

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