||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2009)|
B.MSc. M.D. MLA
|David Swann, Leader of Alberta's Official Opposition|
|Leader of the Official Opposition in Alberta|
December 15, 2008 – September 10, 2011
|Preceded by||Kevin Taft|
|Succeeded by||Raj Sherman|
|Leader of the Alberta Liberal Party|
December 13, 2008 – September 10, 2011
|Preceded by||Kevin Taft|
|Succeeded by||Raj Sherman|
|MLA for Calgary Mountain View|
|Preceded by||Mark Hlady|
|Born||David Richard Swann
June 19, 1949
|Political party||Alberta Liberal Party|
|Alma mater||University of Alberta
University of Calgary
David Richard Swann, MLA (born June 19, 1949) is a medical doctor and Alberta Liberal Member of the Legislative Assembly for Calgary Mountain View. He was the leader of the Alberta Liberal Party and Leader of the Opposition in the Alberta Legislature from December 2008 until resigning as party leader in September 2011.
Family and early life
Swann was born in Taber, Alberta, and was raised in a middle-class family on the edge of downtown Calgary. His father, Richard Swann, was head of oil and gas exploration for Canadian Fina for many years, before that company was sold to Petro-Canada. His mother Margaret was an active volunteer while raising him and his four siblings.
His summers as a child were spent enjoying the countryside and mountains of Alberta. As he grew up, he worked on farms, at gas plants and hospitals to finance his education.
Swann attended Western Canada High School before entering the University of Alberta in Edmonton in 1967. While at the U of A, he was a member of the Golden Bears Basketball team that went to the national basketball finals in 1969. He is still a sports fan and considers himself an outdoorsman; Swann is a regular runner, biker, hiker and canoeist.
After graduating in Family Medicine in 1975, Swann worked in mission hospitals in South Africa for three years, where he met his future wife, Laureen Ross, also a doctor. There he discovered the deep connection between medicine and politics firsthand. He was deeply affected by the human rights abuses of apartheid, particularly the killing of Steve Biko, who lived near the mission where he worked.
Swann and his wife returned to Canada in 1979, were married and settled in Pincher Creek for seven years. This is where their three children were born, and where he participated in a private medical practice with four other physicians.
In 1984, he began specialty training in Public Health (Prevention) and, after graduating in 1989, co-ordinated a primary health care project for the University of Calgary in the Philippines. After returning to Canada, he joined the Alberta Association of Medical Health Officers, becoming their president in 2000 while serving as Medical Officer of Health for Palliser Health and Headwaters Health regions.
In 2002, the Alberta Society of Health Officers passed a resolution calling for real government action on climate change and reductions to air pollution. Swann supported this resolution, the government fired him from his position with Palliser Health within days. This led to widespread condemnation of the Alberta Environment Minister, Lorne Taylor, who had influenced Health Chairman Len Mitzel to terminate him.
Under intense public pressure, the Palliser Board was forced to offer Swann his job back. He declined, instead making humanitarian trips to Iraq, then returning to Alberta to run in the 2004 provincial election.
Swann entered electoral politics as a candidate for the Alberta Liberals. He was elected to the Alberta Legislature in the Alberta general election on November 22, 2004. Along with Harry B. Chase, and Dave Taylor, Swann is part of a re-emergence of provincial Liberals in Calgary which had been completely held by the Progressive Conservatives. During his first term Swann was environment critic and also served as deputy chair of the Standing Committee on Resources and Environment and as a member of the Private Bills Committee and the Standing Committee on Health. Swann was re-elected in the March 3, 2008 election.
Swann won the 2008 Alberta Liberal leadership election on December 13, 2008, defeating Dave Taylor and Mo Elsalhy. On February 1, 2011, he announced his resignation as leader with effect after the spring session of the Legislative Assembly.
Swann has advocated for many causes related to peace and development, human rights and social justice and has worked with organizations such as Physicians for Global Survival, Amnesty international, and Doctors without Borders. Swann has been a vocal supporter of farm worker's rights and regularly campaigns for occupational health and safety laws for Alberta's agricultural sector.
- Fekete, Jason (February 1, 2011). "David Swann will step down as Alberta Liberal leader". Calgary Herald. Retrieved April 24, 2011.
- David Swann Global Peace Initiatives Retrieved 6 Nov 2012
- MLA asks chip giant to boycott Alberta potatoes until child labour laws reformed Retrieved 6 Nov 2012
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to David Swann.|
- Biography for Dr. David Swann on the website of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta
- David Swann website
- David Swann on Alberta Liberal Party website