Rowell, Newton Wesley (rouˈəl) [key], 1867–1941, Canadian jurist and statesman, b. Ontario. He was elected (1911) to the Ontario legislature and then served in the Canadian House of Commons (1917–21) and as a member of Sir Robert Borden's Union government (1917–20). In 1936 he became chief justice of Ontario, and in 1937 he was appointed by William Lyon Mackenzie King to head the royal commission on dominion-provincial relations. Ill health forced him to resign in 1938, and he was replaced as chairman by Joseph Sirois. The commission's findings, commonly called the Rowell-Sirois Report (1940), showed the need for an enlargement of dominion responsibilities—contrary to earlier Liberal party policies.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.