Last night, Maclean’s and L’actualité magazines – in association with the Historica-Dominion Institute and Presenting Sponsor TD – celebrated the 5th annual Parliamentarians of the Year awards. The ceremony was attended by members of Parliament, journalists, and other prominent Canadians at the Château Laurier hotel in Ottawa.
During the event, Kingston and the Islands MP Ted Hsu was named 1st runner up for Rookie of the Year as voted by his parliamentary peers.
With the CBC having speculated that Ted Hsu may be the future of the Liberal Party, the MP taking first place in that category would have to be formidable indeed.
And in fact the winning member of Parliament, Chris Alexander (Ajax-Pickering) of the Progressive Conservatives, meets that criteria in spades.
Unlike Hsu, who is new to politics, Alexander spent six years as Canada’s ﬁrst ambassador in Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban, and then as a special UN representative in Kabul. Along with representing his Ajax-Pickering constituents, he is also parliamentary secretary to Defence Minister Peter MacKay.
Ted Hsu, who grew up in Kingston, is a graduate of Queen’s University and earned a PHD in Physics at Princeton University. Along with a stint as a stay at home dad, he was a physicist, a Morgan Stanley financial manager, and – prior to his entry into politics – held the position of Executive Director of SWITCH, a Kingston not-for-profit sustainable energy association.
In June, Hsu was named the Liberal Critic for Science & Technology as well as the Federal Economic Development Agency of Southern and Northern Ontario. Since being elected, he has been spotted at many local ceremonies and events and stays in touch with Kingstonians through his Twitter and Facebook accounts.
This year marked the first presentation of a Lifetime Achievement Award, which went to the late former NDP Leader, Jack Layton. The award was accepted by his wife, Olivia Chow, who is the member of parliament for Trinity—Spadina in Toronto.
To conduct the Maclean’s and L’actualité poll, Ipsos Reid had all members of Parliament nominate the best MPs in each of seven categories, with MPs casting votes for members both in and outside their own parties. After these votes were converted to a point system, to ensure that larger parties did not have an advantage, the MP who received the most points in each category won.
The member of Parliament earning the most points was named Parliamentarian of the Year, with the 2011 award going to Bob Rae, Liberal MP for Toronto Centre and interim leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.
For a full list of this year’s winners, visit Macleans.ca .
Photo: TedHsu.ca | Home page ‘Featured’ story image: screencap from CBC’s “The National”