VANCOUVER - British Columbia has a new lieutenant governor.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has appointed southern Interior rancher Judith Guichon as the province's new Queen's representative.

A news release from the prime minister's office says Guichon is a leader in keeping B.C.'s agriculture and cattle industries environmentally sound and she has worked hard to promote and protect the interests of ranchers.

Premier Christy Clark says Guichon, who operates Gerard Guichon Ranch Ltd. in the Nicola Valley, represents the values of hard work, tradition and a passion for our shared future.

Clark also thanked retiring Lt.-Gov. Steven Point for his service, which began in 2007, saying the province owes him a great debt of thanks.

Lieutenant governors are appointed by the governor general on the recommendation of the prime minister and serve five-year terms.