01/16/2013 07:32 EST | Updated 03/18/2013 05:12 EDT

Former Privy Council Clerk Gordon Robertson dies at age 95

OTTAWA - Gordon Robertson, a former Clerk of the Privy Council who worked as a senior public servant under five different prime ministers, has died. He was 95.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement Wednesday night calling Robertson "one of the most influential public servants of his day."

Robertson began his career as a public servant in 1941 and held various positions in government including posts with the Department of External Affairs and the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources, where he became Deputy Minister.

He was named Clerk of the Privy Council in July 1963 and held the position until January 1975.

In 1976, he was named Companion of the Order of Canada for his outstanding service to the country.

He retired from public service in 1979 and went on to become the president of the Institute for Research on Public Policy.

He later recounted his career as a senior public servant under multiple administrations in "Memoirs of a Very Civil Servant," which was published in 2000.

"Mr. Robertson will be remembered as a great Canadian and a devoted public servant," Harper said. "On behalf of the Government of Canada, I would like to offer my sincerest condolences to the family and friends he leaves behind."