Rob Anderson (politician)

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Rob Anderson
Photo anderson 20091006.png
MLA for Airdrie-Chestermere
In office
2008–2012
Preceded by Carol Haley
Succeeded by riding dissolved
MLA for Airdrie
Incumbent
Assumed office
2012
Preceded by new riding
Personal details
Born (1977-06-13) June 13, 1977 (age 37)
Edmonton, Alberta
Political party Progressive Conservative (2008–2010, 2014-present)
Wildrose Party (2010–2014)
Residence Airdrie, Alberta
Alma mater Brigham Young University
University of Alberta
Occupation lawyer
Religion The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Website http://www.robanderson.ca

Robert Harmen "Rob" Anderson (born June 13, 1977) is a Canadian politician and current Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta, representing the constituency of Airdrie. He was a Progressive Conservative until he crossed the floor on January 4, 2010 to join the Wildrose Party. He was reelected in the Alberta general election, 2012, with 16 other Wildrose MLAs to form the Official Opposition.

On December 17, 2014, Anderson resigned from the Wildrose caucus to cross the floor and rejoin the governing Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta caucus, along with eight other Wildrose MLAs.[1]

Political career[edit]

Anderson was elected to his first term in Alberta's Legislative Assembly as the Member for Airdrie-Chestermere in the 2008 provincial election.

During his first term, Anderson was appointed as a member of the Provincial Treasury Board and served on the standing and cabinet policy committees on Public Safety and Services as well as the Private Bills committee. He also served as the parliamentary assistant to the Solicitor General and Minister of Public Security.[2]

Anderson's duties as parliamentary assistant included overseeing stakeholder consultations toward developing Alberta's new law enforcement framework; conducting industry consultations for and sponsoring the Security Services and Investigators Act (2008); and sponsoring the Alberta Gaming & Liquor Amendment Act (2009).

Anderson was also the writer and sponsor of a private members bill, the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure (Third Party Advertising) Amendment Act (2009).[3]

Anderson left the Progressive Conservative Party in January 2010 to join the Wildrose Alliance Party, which later changed its name to the Wildrose Party. When future Wildrose leader Danielle Smith made it known she was leaving the Tories for the Wildrose, Anderson was dispatched to talk her out of it. Smith refused to stay, telling Anderson, "This government is beyond redemption. It's out of control." When Anderson finally joined, Smith named him deputy leader.[4]

On April 23, 2012, Anderson was re-elected with 57% of the votes in Airdrie, essentially a redrawn version of his old riding. The Wildrose won 17 seats in that election, making Anderson Deputy Leader of the Opposition. Shortly after the election he was appointed house leader and finance critic for the Official Opposition and was named chair of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts which is all-party committee consisting of 18 Members of the Legislative Assembly that reviews the annual report of the Auditor General of Alberta and the public accounts of the province. He also served on the standing committees for Resource Stewardship as well as the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund.

Anderson's first motion after being re-elected was Motion 506 which urged the government to bring forward legislation that would limit spending increases to no more than population growth plus inflation; prohibit the introduction of a budget that proposes a cash deficit; allocate half of all cash surpluses to the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund; and, amend the appropriate legislation to suspend the practice of spending the interest generated by the Fund until it reaches an amount of at least $200 billion.

In response to the provincial government's 2013-2014 budget, Anderson and the Official Opposition released the Wildrose Financial Recovery Plan, which would have eliminated the operating deficit this year and restored a modest surplus by 2014.[5] In February 2013, Anderson, Drew Barnes and Danielle Smith released the Wildrose 10-year Debt Free Capital Plan. The plan called for $4 billion in capital infrastructure projects in 2013 and $48 billion over 10 years.[6]

Early life[edit]

Anderson was born in Edmonton, the oldest of seven children. The family lived in Sherwood Park for most of Anderson's early years before moving in 1990 to Airdrie.

Anderson spent much of his time playing sports—particularly hockey and football. He won the Edmonton City Championship as defensive captain for the Salisbury High School football team in Sherwood Park, and was named the starting goaltender for the Brigham Young University Cougar's hockey team.

Taiwan missionary service[edit]

When he was nineteen years old, Anderson spent two years living in Taiwan doing missionary service for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where he learnt to speak Mandarin Chinese fluently, and worked as a caregiver for high-needs individuals and taught English as a second language.[3]

Education and awards[edit]

In 2003, Anderson graduated Magna Cum Laude from Brigham Young University with a bachelor of arts in communications.

Three years later, Anderson obtained a bachelor of laws degree from the University of Alberta, graduating ‘with distinction’ honours.

While at law school, Anderson earned the Merv Leitch QC Scholarship for superior academic standing in Constitutional Law and participation in related extra-curricular activities.

Anderson co-founded the organization Students for a Stronger Alberta.[2] This group advocated for democratic reform and more meaningful voter participation in the democratic process, printed a university newspaper (‘the Independent’) focused on debating relevant public policy and political issues of the day, and organized a speaker series on strengthening democracy that included Preston Manning, Ted Morton and David Kilgour.

Business experience[edit]

Prior to his election as a Member of the Legislative Assembly, Anderson practiced corporate litigation law at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP in Calgary.

During his time at law school, Anderson founded an online family entertainment business, selling it shortly before entering politics.

Election results[edit]

2012 Alberta general election (Airdrie) Turnout % Swing
Affiliation Candidate Votes % Party Personal
     Wildrose Rob Anderson 9,415 57.81 %
     Progressive Conservative Kelly Hegg 5,364 32.94 %
     NDP Bryan Young 687 4.22 % *
     Liberal Joel Steacy 523 3.21 % *
     Independent Jeff Willerton 297 1.82 % *
Total ' 100%
Rejected, Spoiled and Declined '
Eligible Electors
     Swing %
2008 Alberta general election results ( Airdrie-Chestermere ) Turnout 40.2%
Affiliation Candidate Votes %
     Progressive Conservative Rob Anderson 9,372 63%
     Wildrose Alliance Jeff Willerton 2,360 16%
     Liberal John Burke 1,972 13%
Greens David Brandreth 660 4%
     NDP Bryan Young 614 4%
Total 14978 100%

References[edit]

External links[edit]