New Democratic Party
Birthplace: Regina, Sask. Grew up in Winnipeg.
Education: Bachelor of social work at the University of Manitoba, a masters degree in public administration at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ont., and a doctorate from the London School of Economics in the U.K.
Before politics: Drove a delivery truck for McGavin Bakery. Worked as a social work professor at the University of Manitoba. Sat on several community boards.
Political career: First elected as the city councillor for St. Boniface in 1989. Ran for mayor of Winnipeg in 1992 after Bill Norrie retired, but lost to Susan Thompson. Entered provincial politics in 1999, when he was elected MLA for St. Boniface and became the NDP government’s finance minister. Re-elected in 2003 and 2007. Became Manitoba’s 21st premier in October 2009 after Gary Doer resigned to become the Canadian ambassador to the U.S. In the NDP leadership campaign, Selinger defeated Steve Ashton in a vote and Andrew Swan, who dropped out.
Personal: Married to Claudette Toupin. Has two sons, Pascal and Eric.
Stakes on Oct. 4: Selinger finds himself in the same position Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach found himself in 2006 — an incumbent premier leading his party into an election for the first time following the resignation of a populist predecessor. Stelmach confounded predictions by expanding the Alberta Tory plurality. While a similar feat by Selinger may prove difficult, any NDP victory would cement his power and demoralize the Manitoba Tory opposition. On the other hand, an NDP loss may trigger a leadership review.
Progressive Conservative Party
Birthplace: Selkirk, Man. Grew up in Winnipeg.
Education: Holds a B.A. and a law degree from the University of Manitoba.
Before politics: Won a Canadian championship as a junior curler in 1986. Worked as a Progressive Conservative Party researcher during the Gary Filmon years and later became Filmon’s secretary. Practised law in Toronto and Winnipeg following the Tory defeat in 1999. Managed Sam Katz’s mayoral campaign in 2004. Served as Katz’s policy adviser for a year.
Political career: Elected the Progressive Conservative MLA for Fort Whyte in a 2005 byelection. Became party leader in April 2006 after Stu Murray stepped down, defeating Neepawa’s Ken Waddell and Springfield’s Ron Schuler. Re-elected in 2007.
Personal: Married to Jen McFadyen. Has two children, Rachael and James.
Stakes on Oct. 4: Like Selinger, McFadyen faces a do-or-die situation. Competing against an NDP government that’s been in office for 11 years — led by a new leader in Selinger — McFadyen will be expected to deliver his party a victory. The failure to do so would trigger a leadership review.
Birthplace: Birmingham, England. Grew up in Saskatoon, Sask.
Education: Holds a B.A. from the University of Saskatchewan, a medical degree from Montreal’s McGill University and a PhD in medicine from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.
Before politics: Worked as a doctor in the U.S. and Canada for more than two decades, eventually becoming an expert on pediatric cancer treatment. Served as head of pediatric hematology and oncology at Winnipeg’s Health Sciences Centre. Taught medicine at the University of Manitoba. Authored or co-authored more than 200 scientific publications. Authored a book about bald eagles in 1988.
Political career: Elected Liberal MP for Portage-Interlake during the Jean Chrétien landslide in 1993. Was defeated by the Reform Party’s Howard Hilstrom in 1997, when the riding became Selkirk-Interlake. Became Manitoba Liberal Party Leader in 1998 following the resignation of Ginny Hasselfield. First elected Liberal MLA for River Heights in 1999 and was re-elected in 2003 and 2007.
Personal: Married to Naomi Gerrard. Has three children, Pauline, Charles and Thomas.
Stakes on Oct. 4: As the only current Liberal MLA, Gerrard is trying to stave off political extinction for his party. A loss in River Heights would signal the end of his political career. If he retains his seat but the Liberals do not make a wider dent in the NDP and Tory vote overall, there will be calls within the party for a new leader.
Birthplace: Brandon. Grew up on a farm near Rapid City.
Education: Holds a B.A. (honours) degree from the University of Manitoba. Studying law at the U of M.
Before politics: Worked as a farm hand. Supervised an alfalfa processing plant. Worked as an administrator for Nesbitt Burns. Runs a marketing company.
Political career: Ran provincially as a Green Party candidate in Minnedosa in 2007, finishing third. Elected Green Party leader in November 2008, defeating Andrew Basham. Ran in the provincial Elmwood byelection in 2009, finishing fourth. Running in Wolseley this election.
Personal: Resides with partner Caitlin McIntyre.
Stakes on Oct. 4: Minimal, as the Greens have nowhere to go but up. Since the party has no seats, Beddome’s sole task will be to position himself and the party as legitimate contenders in a future election.
— Compiled by Bartley Kives
Sources: Free Press files, party websites