Ron Liepert

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Ron Liepert
MLA for Calgary West
In office
Preceded by Karen Kryczka
Succeeded by Ken Hughes
Minister of Health and Wellness in the Alberta government
In office
March 13, 2008 – January 15, 2010
Preceded by Dave Hancock
Succeeded by Gene Zwozdesky
Minister of Education in the Alberta government
In office
December 15, 2006 – March 13, 2008
Preceded by Gene Zwozdesky
Succeeded by Dave Hancock
Personal details
Born 1949/1950 (age 64–65)
Saltcoats, Saskatchewan
Political party Progressive Conservative, Conservative Party of Canada
Spouse(s) Linda
Children 2
Residence Calgary, Alberta
Occupation consultant

Ronald Liepert (born circa 1949)[1] is a Canadian politician. He was a Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta, representing the constituency of Calgary-West as a Progressive Conservative, from 2004 to 2012. On April 12, 2014, Liepert won the federal Conservative nomination in Calgary Signal Hill[2] defeating incumbent Rob Anders.

Early life[edit]

Liepert was born in Saltcoats, Saskatchewan. He grew up on the farm and attended a small rural school. He left high school in the middle of grade 11 at the age of 17.[3] He moved to Calgary where he took a job with Rosco Steel. For three years Liepert returned to the family farm to help with the crop, but he became disillusioned with farming and he settled into Calgary, Alberta year round. He was working at Burns Foods in 1971 when he decided to enroll in the Columbia School of Broadcasting. In 1972 Liepert, married and with an infant daughter, joined CHAB (AM) in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. In the mid-1970s he took a position with CFCW (AM) radio in Camrose, Alberta, and from there he moved to the ITV network (later rebranded to CITV-TV) in Edmonton, Alberta near the end of the 70s.[3]

From 1980 to 1985, Liepert held the position of Press Secretary to Premier Lougheed. Following that responsibility, he moved to the ministry of Alberta Economic Development as the Trade Director of Western U.S. Operations where he remained until 1991. That year, he moved to the private sector to work for Telus where he was involved in both the purchase of Ed Tel and the BCTel merger in addition to the rebranding of AGT to Telus. From 2000 to 2004, Liepart owned his own public relations/communications consulting company and operated a childcare centre in Calgary’s core.

Political career[edit]

Liepert accepted the position of Press Secretary in 1980 when the offer was made by Premier Lougheed. He was at the Premier’s side during the energy negotiations of the early 1980s and at the Constitutional Accord of 1982. He also took part in a number of federal-provincial conferences. He remained Press Secretary until 1985. Following that role, from 1986 to 1991, he held the position of Trade Director of Western U.S. Operations for Alberta Economic Development.

Liepert first ran for a seat to the Alberta Legislature as a Progressive Conservative candidate in the electoral district of Edmonton-Highlands-Beverly in the 1993 Alberta general election. He finished third in the five way race behind winning candidate Alice Hanson and incumbent John McInnis.[4]

After spending some time in the private sector with Telus and a period self-employment doing public relations/communications consulting and owning a childcare centre, Liepert desired to return to the political life. He first sought public office in the 2004 provincial election in the constituency of Calgary-West. In that election, Liepert received 52% of the vote. During his first two years as an MLA, he served as the chair of the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund Committee, a co-chair for the Film Advisory Council, and was a Local Authority Elections Act special committee review team member.

Following the 2006 leadership race for the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta, newly elected Premier Ed Stelmach appointed Liepert as the Minister of Education. During his tenure as Education Minister, he also served as a member of the Cabinet Policy Committee on Community Services. In the 2008 provincial election, Liepert was reelected with 48% of the vote and appointed by the Premier as the Minister of Health and Wellness. In addition to his ministerial responsibilities, Liepert also currently serves as a member of the Privileges and Elections, Standing Orders and Printing Committee.

Alberta Minister of Health and Wellness[edit]

As the Health Minister Liepert dismantled the nine health regions of Alberta in favour of an Alberta Health Services "super" Board. In existence for five months and running a $1.3 billion deficit, they voted themselves, with Liepert's approval, a 25% raise.[5]

He faced criticism over the handling of the flu immunization campaign for the 2009 flu pandemic.[6][7]

Alberta Minister of Energy[edit]

On January 15, 2010, Liepert was sworn in as Minister of Energy.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Liepert is married to Linda. The couple has two adult children. He enjoys golfing and served as a board member at the Pinebrook Golf Club in Calgary. Liepert has coordinated various charitable affairs, such as celebrity sport dinners and several fundraising campaigns and benefits. He also volunteers his time at a variety of other community events.[8]

Election results[edit]

2008 Alberta general election results ( Calgary-West ) Turnout 43.8%
Affiliation Candidate Votes %
     Progressive Conservative Ron Liepert 8,428 48.0%
     Liberal Beth Gignac 5,693 32.4%
     Wildrose Alliance Bob Babcock 2,273 12.9%
Greens James Kohut 773 4.4%
     NDP Chantelle Dubois 401 2.3%
2004 Alberta general election results ( Calgary-West ) Turnout 42.3%
Affiliation Candidate Votes %
     Progressive Conservative Ron Liepert 6,969 52.1%
     Liberal Derek Smith 4,284 32.0%
     Alberta Alliance John Keyes 989 7.4%
Greens James Kohut 731 5.5%
     NDP Chantelle Dubois 408 3.0%