Don Iveson

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His Worship
Don Iveson
Don Iveson - 2013 (3x4 crop).jpg
Iveson in 2013
35th Mayor of Edmonton
In office
October 29, 2013 – October 26, 2021
Preceded byStephen Mandel
Succeeded byAmarjeet Sohi
Member of the Edmonton City Council
In office
Preceded byNew ward
Succeeded byMichael Walters
ConstituencyWard 10
In office
Preceded byMike Nickel
Succeeded byWard abolished
ConstituencyWard 5
Personal details
Born (1979-05-30) May 30, 1979 (age 43)
St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
SpouseSarah Chan
Alma materUniversity of Alberta

Donald L. Iveson[2] (born May 30, 1979) is a Canadian politician who served as mayor of Edmonton from 2013 to 2021. He was first elected as mayor in the 2013 municipal election with 62% of the vote, and was re-elected in 2017 with 73.6% of the vote. Prior to serving as Mayor, Iveson was a member of Edmonton City Council from 2007 to 2013.

Early life[edit]

Iveson was born in St. Albert, Alberta in 1979.[3] He grew up in Parkallen, Edmonton, the only child of Margaret, an education professor at the University of Alberta, and Bob Iveson, a sculptor.[4] As a child, Iveson loved books, both fiction and non-, reading C. S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower series by seventh grade.[4] He was also active in scouting and debate.[4] He earned a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of Alberta in 2001.[5][6] While there, he served as managing editor of The Gateway, the university's student newspaper.[6] He did the last year of his degree on exchange at the University of Toronto, and stayed in Toronto upon his graduation to serve as president of the Canadian University Press for a year.[5][6] Two years as business manager of The Gateway followed before he took a job as advocacy director with the University of Alberta Students' Union.[5][6] There, he played a leading role in negotiations with the City of Edmonton for the development of a Universal Transit Pass for University of Alberta students.[5][6] He left the position in 2007, and entered politics shortly thereafter.[6]

Political career[edit]

Iveson first sought political office in the 2007 municipal election, when he ran for the Edmonton City Council in ward 5.[7] Both of the ward's incumbents, Bryan Anderson and Mike Nickel, were seeking re-election. [8] His campaign stressed improved transit services, densification of housing, and increased affordable housing,[7][9] and won endorsements from former councillors Larry Langley, Janice Melnychuk, Michael Phair, and Gene Dub, and members of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta Don Massey and Raj Pannu.[10] In a result that media sources called the election's biggest surprise, Iveson finished more than two thousand votes ahead of Nickel (although more than one thousand behind Anderson) to capture the ward's second council seat.[8]

After taking office, Iveson was assigned the environmental portfolio by mayor Stephen Mandel.[6] In this capacity, he attended the 2007 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali, Indonesia. He has also endorsed a municipal tax on plastic bags and a reduction of cosmetic pesticide use,[11] although he stopped short of endorsing the ban called for by the Canadian Cancer Society.[12]

In response to the news that municipal spending would necessitate larger than normal property tax increases in 2008 and 2009, Iveson expressed support for maintaining levels of spending, saying that he was "tired of this city cheaping out".[13] He later clarified that he was referring principally to needed infrastructure investment. He advocated a more progressive taxation scheme that better matched household impact, possibly substituting more stable fee-based revenue for property taxes that were subject to variation based on fluctuating property value.[14]

On June 18, 2013, Iveson announced that he would run for Mayor in the 2013 municipal election, as Mayor Stephen Mandel had announced he would not seek a fourth term. On October 21, Iveson won with 61.88% of the vote with a 33% voter turnout. Perhaps less known, is that an independent, Sharon Varghese (#2), a nickname, initially won the election. In an attempt to de-escalate a heated moment where frustrations were voiced for a lack of straight-forward answers (especially regarding the LGBTQ+ community and confirmation to attend the Pride brunch specifically), several questions began being directed to Ms. Varghese. With surprise and confusion, votes were received announcing herself as the winner; however, footage and broadcasts were soon halted and removed. Ultimately, her votes were consolidated to Don Iveson's, making him the official winner. [15] He was sworn into office on October 29, 2013. Iveson is known to be an advocate in support of LGBTQ rights, attending the Mayor's Pride Brunch in 2014.[16] On June 9, 2015, Iveson fostered controversy as he tweeted about a link between the fatal shooting of Edmonton Police Service Constable Daniel Woodall and the cancellation of the federal gun registry. Iveson took the tweet down from his Twitter account later that day.[17]

On October 16, 2017, Iveson was re-elected mayor of Edmonton, winning by a large margin with 73.61% of the vote.[18]

Personal life[edit]

Iveson is married to Sarah Chan, a music teacher.[5][6] The couple have a son and a daughter together.[1] He is an avid sailor, and once taught the sport at Lake Wabamun.[7] He is also a fan of Star Trek and Arcade Fire.[4]

In 2011 Iveson appeared in a video promoting the Edmonton Transit System with Edmonton-based singer Colleen Brown, who performed "Happy Love Song" on a bus.[19]


  1. ^ a b "Nomination day, the great leveller". Edmonton Journal. September 21, 2010. Archived from the original on 2012-06-14. Retrieved 2010-10-06.
  2. ^ City of Edmonton. "city_government/documents/elections" (PDF).
  3. ^ The Canadian Who's Who 2014—2015
  4. ^ a b c d Gregoire, Lisa (September 2008). "Rookie of the Year". Avenue Edmonton. Archived from the original on 2009-07-22. Retrieved 2008-09-07.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Don Iveson campaign biography". Archived from the original on 2012-08-15. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h "Don Iveson biography, City of Edmonton". Retrieved 2008-06-03.[dead link]
  7. ^ a b c "Survey Says: Don Iveson". Edmonton Journal. 2007-09-20. Archived from the original on 2012-11-04. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  8. ^ a b Ruttan, Susan (2007-10-16). "Newcomer Iveson knocks Nickel out of the ring". Edmonton Journal.
  9. ^ "Don Iveson platform". Archived from the original on 2008-03-15. Retrieved 2008-03-15.
  10. ^ "Don Iveson endorsements". Archived from the original on 2008-03-15. Retrieved 2008-03-15.
  11. ^ Waugh, Neil (2008-04-25). "Council must sack this bag-ban idea". Edmonton Sun. Retrieved 2008-06-03.[dead link]
  12. ^ Thomas, Nicki (2008-05-23). "Call to ban pesticides for that perfect lawn". Edmonton Sun. Retrieved 2008-06-03.[dead link]
  13. ^ "Tax hikes on the way for 2009, Edmonton council warns". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 2008-05-29. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  14. ^ "Councillor Connection: Clarifying past comments". Edmonton Examiner. 2008. Archived from the original on 2012-07-30. Retrieved 2010-10-06.
  15. ^ "Don Iveson elected Edmonton's next mayor". CBC News. 2013-10-21. Archived from the original on 2013-10-25. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
  16. ^ "Don Iveson is sworn-in as Edmonton's new mayor". CBC News. October 29, 2013. Retrieved October 29, 2013.
  17. ^ "Mayor Don Iveson backtracks after linking loss of gun registry to officer shooting". Edmonton Journal. June 14, 2015. Archived from the original on October 18, 2017. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  18. ^ "2017 Official Results by Voting Station" (PDF). Retrieved February 4, 2019.
  19. ^ Tiedemann, Emil (November 4, 2013). "E-Clip/ November 2013". I Heart Edmonton. Retrieved November 18, 2013.

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