03/23/2015 05:46 EDT | Updated 05/23/2015 05:59 EDT

Just the facts: veteran lawyer Joe Friday tabbed as new integrity commissioner

OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper has nominated Joe Friday, a lawyer and long-time public servant, to be Canada's next public sector integrity commissioner.

Friday has been interim commissioner since Jan. 1, replacing Mario Dion, who left the job for personal reasons.

The new commissioner first joined the integrity office as general counsel in 2008 and because deputy commissioner in 2011.

He joined the public service in 1992, serving in a variety of legal posts, including general counsel of dispute resolution services with the Justice Department.

He holds a degree in journalism from Carleton University and a law degree from the University of Ottawa.

His appointment will be referred to a Commons committee and must be approved by both the Senate and the House.

The integrity commissioner investigates wrongdoing on the public service and helps protect whistleblowers from reprisal.

In a statement, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said he is pleased Friday accepted the nomination.

"He brings to the position extensive knowledge and understanding of the role of the commissioner, a strong legal background and extensive experience in alternative dispute resolution," Harper said.