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BC Election 2017, News, Politics

Quick guide to the new BC NDP government ministers

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Jenni Sheppard Jul 20, 2017 8:02 am 2,784

After weeks of political twists and turns, new BC Premier John Horgan was sworn in on Tuesday, along with his new provincial cabinet ministers.

This is the first gender balanced cabinet in British Columbian history, and it also includes the first First Nations woman ever appointed to the BC cabinet.

So who are the people now running our province? Here’s a quick rundown:

John Horgan – BC Premier

  • MLA for Juan de Fuca since 2005
  • Leader of the BC NDP since 2014
  • Worked in BC NDP government from 1991 to 2001
  • Later created Idea Works consulting company
  • Born and raised in Victoria
  • Once worked in a pulp mill and at the Keg
  • Degree in History
  • Twitter @jjhorgan

Adrian Dix – Minister of Health

  • MLA for Vancouver-Kingsway since 2005
  • BC NDP leader from 2011 to 2014
  • Was Chief of Staff for BC Premier Glen Clark
  • Became director of Canadian Parents for French
  • Later worked as a political media commentator
  • Raised in Vancouver
  • Degree in History and Political Science
  • Twitter @adriandix

Anne Kang – Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors

Anne Kang - Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors (BC NDP)

Anne Kang – Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Burnaby-Deer Lake since 2017
  • One of first Taiwanese Canadians elected as BC MLA
  • Previously Burnaby City Councillor
  • Worked as elementary school music teacher
  • Received Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for community service
  • Born in Taiwan, raised in Burnaby
  • Degrees in Music, Education, and Special Education
  • Twitter @AnneKangMLA

Bowinn Ma – Parliamentary Secretary for TransLink

Bowinn Ma - Parliamentary Secretary for TransLink (BC NDP)

Bowinn Ma – Parliamentary Secretary for TransLink (BC NDP)

  • MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale since 2017
  • One of first Taiwanese Canadians elected as BC MLA
  • Previously managed expansion and redevelopment at YVR
  • Licensed Professional Engineer
  • Certified Project Management Professional
  • Worked as geological technician and labourer in Yukon
  • Degrees in Applied Sciences and Management
  • Twitter @bowinnma

Bruce Ralston – Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology

Bruce Ralston – Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology (BC NDP)

Bruce Ralston – Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Surrey-Whalley since 2005
  • Was on VanCity board of directors
  • Previously a Surrey City Councillor
  • Formerly a lawyer at his own firm
  • Advocate for innovative housing solutions
  • Born in Victoria, raised in Vancouver
  • Degrees in History and Law
  • Twitter @BruceRalston

Carole James – Minister of Finance and Deputy Premier

  • MLA for Victoria-Beacon Hill since 2005
  • BC NDP leader from 2005 to 2010
  • Former school trustee and social worker
  • Served on Greater Victoria School Board for a decade
  • Was director of childcare policy for BC government
  • She is part Métis and married to First Nations artist Albert Gerow
  • Born in the UK, raised in North Battleford, Saskatchewan and in Victoria
  • Twitter @carolejames

Claire Trevena – Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure

Claire Trevena – Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure (BC NDP)

Claire Trevena – Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure (BC NDP)

  • MLA for North Island since 2005
  • Long-time social activist and trade unionist
  • Previously a BBC and CBC journalist
  • Worked for the UN on democratic development in the Balkans
  • Awarded the Canadian Civilian Peacekeeping Medal
  • Once a member of the BC Green Party
  • Born and raised in the UK
  • Twitter @clairetrevena

David Eby – Attorney General of British Columbia and Minister Responsible for ICBC

David Eby – Attorney General of British Columbia (David Eby)

David Eby – Attorney General of British Columbia (David Eby)

  • MLA for Vancouver-Point Grey since 2013
  • Award-winning human rights lawyer
  • Previously Executive Director of the BC Civil Liberties Association
  • Also worked at Pivot Legal Society in Downtown Eastside
  • Author of The Arrest Handbook: A Guide to Your Rights
  • Raised in Kitchener, Ontario
  • Twitter @Dave_Eby

Doug Donaldson  – Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

  • MLA for Stikine since 2009
  • Previously municipal councillor in Hazelton
  • Has worked in forestry, journalism, teaching, and communications
  • Once gave private guided tours of Yoho National Park
  • Born in Germany to Canadian parents
  • Moved to Field, BC as an adult
  • Degrees in Biology and Journalism
  • Twitter @DonaldsonDoug

George Chow – Minister of State for Trade

George Chow - Minister of State for Trade (BC NDP)

George Chow – Minister of State for Trade (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Vancouver-Fraserview since 2017
  • Previously Vancouver City Councillor
  • Worked at BC Hydro for 30 years
  • Volunteers with many community groups
  • Helped build Chinese Cultural Centre in Vancouver
  • Born in China, came to Canada as a teenager
  • Degree in Mechanical Engineering
  • Twitter @GeorgeChowNDP

George Heyman – Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

  • MLA for Vancouver-Fairview since 2013
  • Long-time environmental and labour activist
  • Former director of the environmental organization Sierra Club
  • Previously president of BC Government and Service Employees’ Union
  • Taught university courses on multi-party negotiations
  • Guest lectured in British Columbia and overseas
  • Raised in Vancouver
  • Twitter @georgeheyman

Harry Bains – Minister of Labour

  • MLA for Surrey-Newton since 2005
  • Initially beat Olympic gold medallist wrestler to win the seat
  • Long-time advocate for workers rights and equality
  • Was elected officer of the Steelworkers Union for 15 years
  • Led negotiations as vice-president of local union chapter
  • Served on Kwantlen University board of governors
  • Volunteered for Habitat for Humanity
  • Twitter @HarryBainsSN

Jennifer Rice – Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness

  • MLA for North Coast since 2013
  • Previously City Councillor in Prince Rupert
  • Volunteered and worked for World Wildlife Fund
  • Also worked for the T. Buck Suzuki Foundation
  • Once a kayaking and scuba diving instructor
  • Born and raised in Ottawa
  • Studied Coastal Ecology
  • Twitter @JenniferRice6

Jinny Sims – Minister of Citizens’ Services

Jinny Sims – Minister of Citizens' Services (BC NDP)

Jinny Sims – Minister of Citizens’ Services (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Surrey-Panorama since 2017
  • Previously MLA for Newton-North Delta from 2011 to 2015
  • Born in India and grew up in the UK
  • Moved to Canada to teach in 1975
  • Long time advocate for education and social justice
  • Previously present of the BC teachers’ Federation
  • Degree in Education
  • Twitter @jinnysims

Judy Darcy – Minister of Mental Health and Addictions

  • MLA for New Westminster since 2013
  • Long-time health care and union advocate
  • Previously National President of CUPE
  • Co-founded Water Watch environmental group
  • Once a candidate for the Workers’ Communist Party
  • Born in Denmark, raised in Sarnia, Ontario
  • Dropped out of degree in Political Science
  • Twitter @DarcyJudy

Katrina Chen – Minister of State for Childcare

Katrina Chen – Minister of State for Childcare (BC NDP)

Katrina Chen – Minister of State for Childcare (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Burnaby-Lougheed since 2017
  • Previously trustee on Burnaby Board of Education
  • Was a community organizer with ACORN
  • Worked in provincial and federal constituency offices
  • Has emceed multiple major cultural festivals
  • Born in Taiwan
  • Degree in Political Science and History
  • Twitter @KatrinaCBurnaby

Katrine Conroy – Minister of Children and Family Development

Katrine Conroy – Minister of Children and Family Development (BC NDP)

Katrine Conroy – Minister of Children and Family Development (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Kootenay West since 2009
  • Previously MLA for West Kootenay-Boundary since 2005
  • Was one of BC’s first female power engineers
  • Previously worked as an early childhood educator
  • Also worked as administrator and college instructor
  • Runs a ranch breeding prize-winning cattle
  • Lives in Pass Creek
  • Twitter @KatrineConroy

Lana Popham – Minister of Agriculture

  • MLA for Saanich South since 2009
  • Previously worked as a farmer
  • Ran a certified organic vineyard
  • Long time farming and environmental advocate
  • Campaigned to end use of plastic bags in stores
  • Raised on Quadra Island
  • Degree in Urban Geography
  • Twitter @lanapopham

Lisa Beare – Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture

Lisa Beare – Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture (BC NDP)

Lisa Beare – Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows since 2017
  • Previously a Maple Ridge school board trustee
  • Was Vice-President of local CUPE union chapter
  • Advocate for child care and education
  • Once a flight attendant and trained commercial pilot
  • Raised in Maple Ridge
  • Diploma in Local Government Management
  • Twitter @lisabeare

Mable Elmore – Parliamentary Secretary for Poverty Reduction

Mable Elmore - Parliamentary Secretary for Poverty Reduction (BC NDP)

Mable Elmore – Parliamentary Secretary for Poverty Reduction (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Vancouver-Kensington since 2009
  • First BC MLA of Filipino heritage
  • Long-time social justice and peace activist
  • Worked for BC Philippine Women Centre
  • Was a bus driver for Coast Mountain for 10 years
  • Born in Langley
  • Degree in Physical Education
  • Twitter @mableelmore

Melanie Mark – Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training

  • MLA for Vancouver-Mount Pleasant since 2016
  • She is Nisga’a, Gitxsan, Cree and Ojibway
  • First ever First Nations woman to serve in BC legislature
  • First ever First Nations woman appointed to BC cabinet
  • Raised in East Vancouver
  • Long-time advocate for youth and aboriginal causes
  • Degree in Political Science and Diploma in Criminology
  • Twitter @melaniejmark

Michelle Mungall – Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

  • MLA for Nelson-Creston since 2009
  • First woman ever elected as MLA in Nelson-Creston
  • Previously elected to Nelson City Council at just 24 years old
  • Long-time homelessness and social justice campaigner
  • Previously worked in Zambia, Ukraine, and Cambodia
  • Raised in St. Albert, Alberta
  • Degree in Political Science
  • Twitter @michellemungall

Mike Farnworth – Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General

Mike Farnworth – Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General (BC NDP)

Mike Farnworth – Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Port Coquitlam since 2005
  • First served as MLA under BC NDP government 1991 to 2001
  • Served as Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing
  • Served as Minister of Employment and Investment
  • Served as Minister of Health and Responsible for Seniors
  • Served as Minister of Social Development and Economic Security
  • Worked in Bulgaria, the Balkans and Iraq on democratic programs
  • Twitter @mikefarnworthbc

Ravi Kahlon – Parliamentary Secretary for Sport and Multiculturalism

Ravi Kahlon - Parliamentary Secretary for Sport and Multiculturalism (BC NDP)

Ravi Kahlon – Parliamentary Secretary for Sport and Multiculturalism (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Delta-North since 2017
  • Two-time Olympian Canadian field hockey player
  • Also spent seven years in banking
  • Was Director of Stakeholder Relations for BC NDP Caucus
  • Hockey and soccer coach and mentor
  • On Delta Parks and Recreation Committee
  • Born and raised in Victoria
  • Twitter @KahlonRav

Rick Glumac – Parliamentary Secretary for Technology

Rick Glumac - Parliamentary Secretary for Technology (BC NDP)

Rick Glumac – Parliamentary Secretary for Technology (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Port Moody-Coquitlam since 2017
  • Previously Port Moody City Councillor
  • Chaired several committees, from arts to community care
  • Representative in multiple Metro Vancouver organizations
  • Worked in animated film and video games
  • Also managed development of iPhone apps
  • Degree in Electronics Engineering
  • Twitter @rickglumacbc

Rob Fleming – Minister of Education

  • MLA for Victoria-Swan Lake since 2009
  • Previously MLA for Victoria-Hillside since 2005
  • Former Victoria City Councillor
  • Previously worked for Ministry of Advanced Education
  • Long-time advocate for public education
  • Once monitored elections in El Salvador
  • Bachelor of Arts degree
  • Twitter @Rob_Fleming

Scott Fraser – Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

Scott Fraser – Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation (BC NDP)

Scott Fraser – Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim since 2017
  • Previously MLA for Alberni-Pacific Rim
  • Previously MLA for Alberni-Qualicum since 2005
  • Formerly Mayor of Tofino
  • Helped Clayoquot Sound become UNESCO World Biosphere site
  • Once worked on oil rigs in the Arctic
  • Born in Ottawa
  • Twitter @scottfraserndp

Selina Robinson – Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing

Selina Robinson – Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing (BC NDP)

Selina Robinson – Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Coquitlam-Maillardville since 2013
  • Previously Coquitlam City Councillor
  • Worked as a home-based family therapist
  • Was director of SHARE Family and Community Services
  • Also Counselling Instructor and Program Developer at UBC
  • Participates in the Ride To Conquer Cancer every year
  • Raised in Montreal
  • Twitter @selinarobinson

Shane Simpson – Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction

Shane Simpson – Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction (BC NDP)

Shane Simpson – Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction (BC NDP)

  • MLA for Vancouver-Hastings since 2005
  • Previously in policy and communications at Smart Growth BC
  • Former chair of Vancouver City Planning Commission
  • Teaches SFU’s Community Economic Development program
  • Founded the Hastings Park Restoration Society
  • Received Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for community service
  • Born and raised in East Vancouver
  • Twitter @ShaneLSimpson
See also

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Jenni Sheppard
Jenni is a former Senior Staff Writer at Daily Hive. Happy Vancouverite. Traveller, snowboarder, foodie, film fan, feminist, geek, cheesemaker, curler.

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