List of premiers of Ontario

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Kathleen Wynne is the current Premier of Ontario.

This is a list of the premiers of the province of Ontario, Canada, since Confederation in 1867. Ontario uses a unicameral Westminster-style parliamentary government, in which the premier is the leader of the party that controls the most seats in the Legislative Assembly. The premier is Ontario's head of government, while the Queen of Canada is its head of state and is represented by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. The premier picks a cabinet from the elected members to form the Executive Council of Ontario, and presides over that body.

Members are first elected to the legislature during general elections. General elections must be conducted every four years from the date of the last election. An election may also happen if the Governing party loses the confidence of the legislature, by the defeat of a supply bill or tabling of a confidence motion.

This article only covers the time since the Canadian Confederation was created in 1867. For the premiers of Canada West from 1840 to 1867, see List of Joint Premiers of the Province of Canada.


Premiers of Ontario since 1867[edit]

      Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario       United Farmers of Ontario       Ontario Liberal Party       Ontario New Democratic Party

No. Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
District
Term of office Electoral mandates (Assembly) Political party
1
John Sandfield Macdonald.jpg
John Sandfield Macdonald
(1812–1872)
MLA for Cornwall
16 July[1]
1867
20 December[1]
1871
Liberal-Conservative Party
Macdonald led a Coalition between the Liberal-Conservative Party and the Liberal Party; was also an MP in the House of Commons until 1872; was the last Catholic premier for 132 years
2
Edward Blake.jpg
Edward Blake
(1833–1912)
MLA for Bruce South
20 December[2]
1871
25 October[2]
1872
Liberal Party
Resigned to lead the federal Liberal Party
3
Oliver Mowat head.jpg
Sir Oliver Mowat
(1820–1903)
MLA for Oxford North
25 October[3]
1872
21 July[3]
1896
Liberal Party
Secured a large amount of power for the provinces through court battles with the federal government; introduced the secret ballot in elections and extended suffrage beyond property owners; created the municipal level of government; Ontario prohibition plebiscite, 1894
4
Arthur Sturgis Hardy.jpg
Arthur Sturgis Hardy
(1837–1901)
MLA for Brant South
21 July[4]
1896
21 October[4]
1899
Liberal Party
5
Honourable GW Ross, Prime Minister for Ontario (HS85-10-12129).jpg
Sir George William Ross
(1841–1914)
MLA for Middlesex West
21 October[5]
1899
8 February[5]
1905
Liberal Party
Expanded libraries, kindergarten, and university grants; Ontario prohibition referendum, 1902
6
James Whitney.jpg
Sir James Whitney
(1843–1914)
MLA for Dundas
8 February[6]
1905
25 September[6]
1914
Conservative Party
Hydro-Electric Power Commission of Ontario; Workmen's Compensation Act; temperance legislation; Regulation 17
7
William Hearst.jpg
Sir William Hearst
(1864–1941)
MLA for Sault Ste. Marie
2 October[7]
1914
14 November[7]
1919
Conservative Party
Ontario Temperance Act; expanded workers injury compensation; allowed woman suffrage; Ontario prohibition referendum, 1919
8
Ernest Drury.jpg
Ernest Drury
(1878–1968)
MLA for Halton
14 November[8]
1919
16 July[8]
1923
United Farmers
Led a Coalition between the United Farmers party and the Labour MLAs; did not win a seat in the legislature until a 1920 by-election; created the first Department of Welfare; set a minimum wage for women; expanded Ontario Hydro; created the Province of Ontario Savings Office; began the first major reforestation program in North America; Ontario prohibition referendum, 1921
9
Honghowardferguson.jpg
George Howard Ferguson
(1870–1946)
MLA for Grenville
16 July[9]
1923
15 December[9]
1930
Conservative Party
Named leader in 1920
Relaxed Regulation 17; created the Liquor Control Board of Ontario; Ontario prohibition referendum, 1924
10
George Stewart Henry small.gif
George Stewart Henry
(1871–1958)
MLA for York East
15 December[10]
1930
10 July[10]
1934
Conservative Party
Expansion of highway system, including construction of the Queen Elizabeth Way
11
Mitchell Hepburn1 crop.jpg
Mitchell Hepburn
(1896–1953)
MLA for Elgin (until 1938)
MPP for Elgin (from 1938)
10 July[11]
1934
21 October[11]
1942
Liberal Party
Named leader in 1930
Greatly cutting government spending; succession tax; compulsory milk pasteurization; relaxed temperance laws; made the Dionne Quintuplets wards of the state; unsuccessfully tried to break the first United Auto Workers strike against GM; conflict with PM Mackenzie King over conduct of WWII and conscription.
12
Gordon Daniel Conant.jpg
Gordon Daniel Conant
(1885–1953)
MPP for Ontario
21 October[12]
1942
18 May[12]
1943
Liberal Party
"Appointed" premier by Liberal leader Mitchell Hepburn but forced to call and contest leadership convention due to caucus revolt, which he lost to Nixon.
13
Harry Nixon MLA.jpg
Harry Nixon
(1891–1961)
MPP for Brant
18 May[13]
1943
17 August[13]
1943
Liberal Party
Named leader in 1943
Last Liberal Premier for 42 years.
14
GeorgeDrew.jpg
George A. Drew
(1894–1973)
MPP for High Park (until 1948)
17 August[14]
1943
19 October[14]
1948
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1938
Began a 42-year Conservative dynasty; Drew Regulation; LeBel Royal Commission; joined Ontario to North American power grid, increased provincial share of Education spending; opened immigration offices in UK and arranged for cheap charter flights to bring 20,000 British immigrants to Ontario.
15
ThomasKennedy.jpg
Thomas Laird Kennedy
(1878–1959)
MPP for Peel
19 October[15]
1948
4 May[15]
1949
Progressive Conservative Party
Interim premier between resignation of Drew and leadership convention to choose his successor.
16
Leslie Frost Premier of Ontario.jpg
Leslie Frost
(1895–1973)
MPP for Victoria
4 May[16]
1949
8 November[16]
1961
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1949
400-series highways; Provincial Sales Tax; public hospital insurance which would become OHIP; Expansion of universities; Fair Employment Practices Act and Fair Accommodation Practices Act; Voting rights for First Nations; Creation of Metropolitan Toronto and Toronto's first subway.
17
John Robarts, Premier of Ontario.jpg
John Robarts
(1917–1982)
MPP for London North
8 November[17]
1961
1 March[17]
1971
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1961
Ontario Human Rights Code; 1967 "Confederation of Tomorrow" conference; French education in Ontario schools; Creation of Ontario Health Insurance Plan; Creation of community college system; Creation of TVOntario.
18
Bill Davis Toronto 1984.jpg
Bill Davis
(b. 1929)
MPP for Peel North (until 1975)
MPP for Brampton (from 1975)
1 March[18]
1971
8 February[18]
1985
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1971
Spadina Expressway; rejected (1971) then later partly extended (1984); full funding to Ontario's Catholic high schools; New regional governments; Rent controls; Played a key role in patriation of the Canadian Constitution.
19
No image.svg
Frank Miller
(1927–2000)
MPP for Muskoka
8 February[19]
1985
26 June[19]
1985
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1985
Lost a motion of no confidence immediately after the election and resigned power to the opposition party.
20
David Peterson (2005).jpg
David Peterson
(b. 1943)
MPP for London Centre
26 June[20]
1985
1 October[20]
1990
Liberal Party
Named leader in 1982
Had the second-most seats in the 33rd assembly, but formed an accord with the New Democratic Party that would let the Liberal Party take power without forming an official coalition. Banned extra-billing by doctors and ended health insurance premiums. Reforms to rent laws, labour negotiation laws, pensions, environment; implemented extension of Catholic school funding to grade 13 announced by previous government; supported the Meech Lake Accord; Introduced no-fault auto insurance; Patti Starr scandal
21
Bob Rae.jpg
Bob Rae
(b. 1948)
MPP for York South
1 October[21]
1990
26 June[21]
1995
New Democratic Party
Named leader in 1982
Social Contract (Ontario) and clash with unions; Rae days; Pay equity; Affirmative action; Strengthening of rent control; anti-scab legislation; Reserve status for North Ontario Aboriginals; Moratorium on new nuclear plants; Attempted to maintain ban on Sunday shopping before allowing it; Introduction of casinos; Attempted to bring in extension of benefits for same-sex partners.
22
Mike Harris 2014.jpg
Mike Harris
(b. 1945)
MPP for Nipissing
26 June[22]
1995
14 April[22]
2002
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 1990
Common Sense Revolution; 30% tax cut; 21% cut to social assistance rates; attempted to introduce Workfare; cancelled urban infrastructure projects including Eglinton subway; cut government spending; Telehealth Ontario; Division of Ontario Hydro; municipal amalgamations, including Amalgamation of Toronto; Elimination of OAC year (Grade 13) and re-introduction of standardized testing; privatization of Highway 407; Ipperwash Crisis; teacher strikes; Walkerton Tragedy; Ontario's Drive Clean; hospital closures and health restructuring.
23
No image.svg
Ernie Eves
(b. 1946)
MPP for Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey
15 April[23]
2002
22 October[23]
2003
Progressive Conservative Party
Named leader in 2002
Kimberly Rogers and welfare reform; Possible sale of Hydro One and problem with hydro costs due to hot summers and 2003 North America blackout
24
Dalton McGuinty Crop 2.jpg
Dalton McGuinty
(b. 1955)
MPP for Ottawa South
23 October[24][25]
2003
11 February[24][26]
2013
Liberal Party
Named leader in 1996
Green Energy and Economy Act; Auto insurance reforms; Cancelled tax cuts; Increase in health spending and Health Premium tax; Transfer of gas tax to municipalities; Pit bull ban; Greenbelt (Golden Horseshoe); Renegotiation of federal equalization; Expansion of Ontario's Drive Clean; full-day kindergarten; MoveOntario; eHealth Ontario scandal; Harmonized Sales Tax; Ontario power plant scandal. On October 15, 2012, unexpected announcement of resignation and prorogation of legislature
25
Kathleen Wynne.JPG
Kathleen Wynne
(b. 1953)
MPP for Don Valley West
11 February[27][28]
2013
Incumbent Liberal Party
Named leader in 2013
First female premier of Ontario, first openly gay premier in Canada
Co. Coalition government (^Macdonald ^Drury )
Min. Minority government (^Drew ^Davis ^Miller ^Peterson ^McGuinty ^Wynne )
LS Party won the election, but premier lost own seat (^Drew )

Timeline of Ontario Premiers[edit]

Kathleen Wynne Dalton McGuinty Ernie Eves Mike Harris Bob Rae David Peterson Frank Miller (premier of Ontario Bill Davis John Robarts Leslie Frost Thomas Kennedy George Drew Harry Nixon Gordon Daniel Conant Mitchell Hepburn George Stewart Henry George Howard Ferguson Ernest Drury William Hearst James Whitney George William Ross Arthur Hardy Oliver Mowat Edward Blake John Sandfield MacDonald

Living former premiers[edit]

As of February 2013, six former premiers are alive, the oldest being Bill Davis (1971–1985, born 1929). The most recent former premier to die was Frank Miller (February–June 1985), on July 21, 2000.

Name Term Date of birth
Bill Davis 1971–1985 (1929-07-30) July 30, 1929 (age 84)
David Peterson 1985–1990 (1943-12-28) December 28, 1943 (age 70)
Bob Rae 1990–1995 (1948-08-02) August 2, 1948 (age 65)
Mike Harris 1995–2002 (1945-01-23) January 23, 1945 (age 69)
Ernie Eves 2002–2003 (1946-06-17) June 17, 1946 (age 68)
Dalton McGuinty 2003–2013 (1955-07-19) July 19, 1955 (age 59)

See also[edit]

For more lists of this type, see Lists of incumbents.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b "John Sandfield Macdonald, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Edward Blake, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Oliver Mowat, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Arthur Sturgis Hardy, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "George William Ross, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "James Pliny Whitney, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "William Howard Hearst, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b "Ernest Charles Drury, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "George Howard Ferguson, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "George Stewart Henry, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "Mitchell Frederick Hepburn, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b "Gordon Daniel Conant, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  13. ^ a b "Harry Corwin Nixon, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  14. ^ a b "George Alexander Drew, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  15. ^ a b "Thomas Laird Kennedy, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  16. ^ a b "Leslie Miscampbell Frost, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  17. ^ a b "John Parmenter Robarts, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  18. ^ a b "William Grenville Davis, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  19. ^ a b "Frank Stuart Miller, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  20. ^ a b "David Robert Peterson, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  21. ^ a b "Bob Keith Rae, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  22. ^ a b "Michael Harris, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  23. ^ a b "Ernie Eves, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  24. ^ a b "Dalton McGuinty, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  25. ^ "McGuinty Government Takes Office; Ready To Get To Work For All Ontarians". Office of the Premier of Ontario. October 23, 2003. Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  26. ^ "Meeting with the Premier and Ms. Wynne". Office of the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. Retrieved February 12, 2013. 
  27. ^ "Kathleen Wynne, MPP". Legislative Assembly website. Legislative Assembly on Ontario. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  28. ^ "Jobs, Economy, a Fair Society: Priorities for New Ontario Government". Office of the Premier of Ontario. February 11, 2013. Retrieved February 12, 2013. 

References[edit]

  • James H. Marsh, ed. (1999). "Ontario". The Canadian Encyclopedia (2000 ed.). Toronto: McClelland & Stewart. p. 1713. ISBN 0-7710-2099-6. 
  • Government of Ontario. "Historical Records". Past & Present MPPs. Legislative Assembly of Ontario. Retrieved 2007-03-11.