Lorne Trottier portrait

Lorne Trottier

Board of Directors of The Planetary Society; Co-founder and President of Matrox Video.

Lorne Trottier is the co-founder and President of Matrox Video. A self-described space and science geek, Lorne has had a lifelong passion for space exploration. Lorne caught the “bug” for electronics and science in the earliest days of the space program when he was 11 years old. He remembers watching Alan Shepard’s 15-minute suborbital flight in 1961, through the Apollo Moon landings, to the successful launch and deployment of the James Webb Space Telescope. Lorne has been a long-time member of the Planetary Society.

Lorne co-founded Matrox in 1976 at the dawn of the microprocessor era. Matrox has enjoyed over 45 years of success in the rapidly evolving tech industry. Matrox has re-invented itself multiple times to remain in the forefront in its specialized areas such as equipment for broadcast television. Last year, Lorne sold Matrox Imaging, which makes machine vision products for factory automation. Lorne remains active in a tech leadership role at the company.

Lorne and his wife Louise established the Trottier Family Foundation in 2000 which makes grants in the areas of climate change, education, environment, health, and science. In 2022 the Foundation announced major gifts to the Trottier Space Institute at McGill University, and the Trottier Institute for Research on Exoplanets at the Université de Montréal. In the area of climate change the Foundation has funded the establishment of the Trottier Institute for Sustainability in Engineering and Design (TISED) at McGill and l’Institut de l’Énergie Trottier (IET) at l’École Polytechnique in Montreal. These Institutes are charged with doing education and research as well as public outreach in the areas of sustainable development and clean energy. 

The Foundation has also been active in supporting science outreach such as the Trottier Public Science Symposium Series – a series of annual lectures organized by the McGill Office for Science & Society, featuring outstanding speakers from around the world and designed "to inform, inspire debate and raise public awareness on contemporary issues confronting society today.” The Foundation has also provided support for organizations such as Let’s Talk Science in Canada, and the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) in the US.

Lorne earned a Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from McGill University in 1970, and a Master’s degree in 1973. In 2006 he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree from the same university. He is a Governor Emeritus of the university.

In 2003, Lorne received the Prix Lionel-Boulet, the Government of Quebec's highest honor in the area of applied technology. In 2007, he was named a Member of the Order of Canada and he was promoted to Officer of the Order of Canada in 2016. In 2011, 2013, 2016, 2018, and 2019, he received honorary doctorates from l’Université de Montréal/Polytechnique (jointly), the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), l’Université de Québec à Montréal (UQAM), Concordia University, and Simon Fraser University respectively.