Former Kingston & the Islands Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) Sophie Kiwala announced this week that she hopes to run again in 2022.
Kiwala served as Liberal MPP from 2014 to 2018 under Premier Kathleen Wynne, taking over from long-running Liberal MPP John Gerretsen. Kiwala needs to earn the Liberal nomination for the riding before becoming a candidate for MPP in 2022.
Kiwala said losing the 2018 election has not dimmed her passion for service. “We accomplished so much and there is still so much more to do in realizing the tremendous potential that exists within the riding,” she said.
Since 2018, Kiwala has launched a consulting firm for small businesses, and is currently completing a master’s degree in Public Administration at Queen’s University. She has also served as Chair of the Ovarian Cancer Walk of Hope for Kingston, Board Vice-Chair at the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning, and provincial Indigenous Engagement Coordinator for the Liberal Party of Ontario.
Kiwala said she sees both large infrastructure projects as well support for the “unseen” as important aspects of a future mandate.
“That includes the most vulnerable members of the community and the amazing volunteers and front line workers within organizations who give so much to make a difference,” she said. “It also includes the incredible human infrastructure – the healthcare workers, small business owners, researchers, educators, artists and newcomers – all those who make our community and our economy diverse and vibrant.”
Looking back to 2018
Kiwala earned 27.5 per cent of the vote in the 2018 provincial election, second behind current NDP MPP Ian Arthur, at 39.3 per cent. Arthur was the first non-Liberal candidate to win MPP since 1995. Over all, the Liberals suffered major losses, falling from 58 to just seven seats in the provincial legislature.
This took them from a majority government position to third place, behind the elected PC government and the NDP. The Liberals lost official party status, and Wynne stepped down as a result. Their new leader, Steven Del Duca, was elected on Mar. 7, 2020.
During her former term, Kiwala was the Chair of the Jobs and Economic Policy Cabinet Committee, and helped to orchestrate the all-party Heart & Stroke caucus. She also served on the Estimates, General Government and Legislative Assembly committees, and a number of party committees including: Association for French Speaking Parliamentarians, Lung Health Caucus and Rural Caucus.
Former federal Speaker and Federal MP for Kingston, Peter Milliken, is endorsing Kiwala’s nomination. “Sophie has proven herself to be a reliable and effective constituency-based MPP with a record of proven results on behalf of the people of Kingston and the Islands,” he said. “I am thrilled she is stepping up to the line once again in offering to serve the community she cares for so deeply.”