Epp, Arthur Jacob
Arthur Jacob Epp, "Jake," politician (b at St Boniface, Man 1 Sept 1939). The son of a Mennonite preacher, Epp graduated from U of Man in 1961 and then taught high school for 11 years in Steinbach, Man, where he was a town councillor 1970-71. Elected to the House of Commons for Provencher in 1972, he was minister of Indian affairs and northern development in the Clark government 1979-80. Epp was Clark's most trusted parliamentary ally in the leadership battles that followed the election defeat of 1980, and he was prominent in opposing the Trudeau government's plan to patriate the constitution unilaterally.
PM Brian Mulroney named Epp minister of health and welfare and chairman of the Cabinet committee on social development in 1984. In the Mulroney government from 1984, Epp was an effective and respected minister involved in issues such as child care and the government's campaign against smoking. In 1988 he was moved to the ministry of energy, mines and resources. He remained minister until he announced his retirement from politics in Jan 1993.