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The Candidates

Watch the video of the panel discussion on the future of screen-based industries that was co-hosted by ACTRA in Toronto on October 7, 2015. The discussion was moderated by Trina McQueen, and included panelists Liberal MP Stéphane Dion and NDP MP Andrew Cash.

Below you will find the biographies and arts & culture party platforms for the four main political party leaders in the upcoming election:


The Incumbent: Stephen Harper, Conservative Party of Canada

Stephen Harper was born in Toronto on April 30, 1959. He moved to Alberta in 1978 to work in the petroleum industry and went on to obtain a bachelor’s and master’s degree in economics from the University of Calgary. Mr. Harper and his wife Laureen have two children, and maintain a permanent home in Calgary. Harper was one of the founding members of the Reform Party, but did not seek re-election in the 1997 federal election. In 2002, he succeeded Stockwell Day as leader of the Canadian Alliance (the successor to the Reform Party) and returned to Parliament as Leader of the Opposition. Harper became leader of the then newly merged Conservative Party of Canada in 2004 and was elected prime minister of Canada in 2006.

tomThe Official Opposition: Tom Mulcair, NDP
Tom Mulcair was born in 1954 in Ottawa and raised in the Wrightville district of Hull (now Gatineau) and in Laval, just north of Montreal. Mulcair graduated from McGill University in 1977 with degrees in common law and civil law. He has been married to Catherine Pinhas since 1976 and the couple have two sons. Before joining the NDP, Mulcair served as the MNA in riding of Chomedey in Laval from 1994 to 2007 under the Liberal Party of Quebec, which included his tenure as Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks from 2003 until 2006. Mulcair won the by-election as a NDP candidate in 2007 and that same year was also appointed Quebec lieutenant by Jack Layton. Mulcair won the NDP leadership election in March 2012.

JT3rd party leader: Justin Trudeau, Liberal Party of Canada
Trudeau was born in Ottawa on December 25, 1971, and was raised primarily in Montreal after his father retired from politics. Trudeau has a Bachelor of Arts degree in literature from McGill University and a Bachelor of Education degree from the UBC. From 2002 to 2004, he studied engineering at the Université de Montréal. He started a Master of Arts degree in Environmental Geography at McGill University before suspending his program to seek public office. Trudeau has been married to Sophie Grégoire since 2005, and the couple has three children together. In 2008, Trudeau was elected as the MP for the riding of Papineau and was re-elected in 2011. In April 2013, Trudeau was elected leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.

elizabethmay_web24th party leader: Elizabeth May, Green Party of Canada
Elizabeth May was born in Hartford, Connecticut, on June 9, 1954, to a British father and American mother. In 1972, the May family moved to Margaree Harbour, Nova Scotia, following a summer vacation spent on Cape Breton Island. May briefly enrolled at St. Francis Xavier University in 1974, but dropped out. Beginning in 1980, she attended Dalhousie Law School as a mature student, graduating in 1983. In August 2006, May was elected the Green Party of Canada’s ninth leader. In May 2011, she became the Green Party of Canada’s second Member of Parliament in the riding of Saanich – Gulf Islands in British Columbia, following Blair Wilson, who briefly represented the party as the MP in BC’s West Vancouver – Sunshine Coast – Sea to Sky Country riding in 2008.



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