Iain Rankin

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Iain Rankin
Rankin in 2021
Leader of the Opposition
In office
August 31, 2021 – July 9, 2022
Preceded byTim Houston
Succeeded byZach Churchill
29th Premier of Nova Scotia
In office
February 23, 2021 – August 31, 2021
MonarchElizabeth II
Lieutenant GovernorArthur J. LeBlanc
DeputyKelly Regan
Preceded byStephen McNeil
Succeeded byTim Houston
Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party
In office
February 6, 2021 – July 9, 2022
Preceded byStephen McNeil
Succeeded byZach Churchill
Minister of Lands and Forestry
In office
July 5, 2018 – October 5, 2020
PremierStephen McNeil
Preceded byMargaret Miller
Succeeded byDerek Mombourquette
Minister of Environment
In office
June 15, 2017 – July 5, 2018
PremierStephen McNeil
Preceded byMargaret Miller
Succeeded byMargaret Miller
Member of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly
for Timberlea-Prospect
Assumed office
October 8, 2013
Preceded byBill Estabrooks
Personal details
Iain Thomas Rankin

(1983-04-09) April 9, 1983 (age 41)[citation needed]
Inverness, Nova Scotia, Canada[1]
Political partyLiberal
SpouseMary Chisholm
ChildrenFreya Rose Rankin
ResidenceHalifax, Nova Scotia
Alma materHolland College
Mount Saint Vincent University
WebsiteOfficial website

Iain Thomas Rankin MLA (born April 9, 1983) [citation needed] is a Canadian politician who served as the 29th premier of Nova Scotia from February 23, 2021, to August 31, 2021. He serves in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly for the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, representing the electoral district of Timberlea-Prospect .[2] Rankin was first elected in the 2013 Nova Scotia general election and was re-elected in the 2017 general election. On February 6, 2021, Rankin was announced the Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party.[3]

On February 23, 2021, Rankin became the 29th premier of Nova Scotia. Rankin called an election for August 17, 2021, which his Liberal Party lost to the Progressive Conservative Party of Nova Scotia. Rankin left office as Premier on August 31, 2021, when Houston took the oath. At that time, Rankin became the Leader of the Opposition in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly.

On January 5, 2022, Rankin announced that he will resign as leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party once a new leader is chosen.[4]

Early life and education[edit]

Ian Thomas Rankin[5] was born in Inverness, Nova Scotia, and grew up in Timberlea. He is the son of long-term Halifax city councillor Reg Rankin.[1] Rankin graduated from Sir John A. Macdonald High School in 2001. He received a diploma in Professional Golf Management from Holland College, a Bachelor of Business Administration from Mount Saint Vincent University in 2006[6] and a Masters of Arts in International Politics at CERIS-ULB Diplomatic School of Brussels.[7][8]

Before entering politics, Iain was employed as an operations manager and as a project manager. He was the Director of Operations for Dymon Storage Corporation, in Ottawa, Ontario.[9] After returning to Nova Scotia in 2011, Iain successfully managed the launch, as an operating partner, of Premiere Self Storage, in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.[10][11][12] He went on to work as a project manager in the commercial division of Armco Capital, focusing on redevelopment assignments in Nova Scotia and Quebec.


Rankin, a rescue dog owner, supported the Nova Scotia government's plan to outlaw tying pets up for longer than 12 hours.[13] In 2014 with the support of local residents, Rankin participated in a campaign with lawn signs targeting speeders with a message to slow down.[14] Through a private member's bill and was passed by the legislature, Rankin submitted Bill 176 which will restrict Otter Lake Waste Facility to its current height and size.[15][16][17]

In 2015, Rankin chaired an all-Party working group established by the Committee on Assembly Matters. He introduced a motion to approve the Nova Scotia House of Assembly policy on prevention and resolution of harassment in the workplace, drafted by the all-Party working group established by this committee on September 28, 2015.[18]

In April 2016, Rankin participated at the Community Services Standing Committee and introduced a motion asking that full funding for the Nova Scotia Association for Community Living (NSACL) be reinstated.[19]

In November 2016, after the submissions were heard at Law Amendments Committee, Rankin proposed a motion to stand The Accessibility Act for further consultation, quoted as saying "We have a moral obligation to get this bill right."[20]

During Rankin's time at Law Amendments Committee, Bill 59 (the Accessibility Act) was amended after witnesses appeared and staff consulted with representatives of persons with disabilities. It was moved to the Department of Justice and passed, in April 2017, with the intent of making the province accessible by 2030.[21]

Rankin participated in a virtual event commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children in June 2021, speaking alongside MLA Tony Ince, Senator Wanda Thomas Bernard, Judge Corrine Sparks and Rev. Rhonda Britton.[22]

Political career[edit]

Rankin first ran for public office in the 2013 Nova Scotia general election and was elected to the Nova Scotia House of Assembly. During his first term, he served as the Liberal caucus chair.[23] He was vice-chair of the public accounts committee, and a member of the assembly matters and the private and local bills committees. He was also a member of the House of Assembly Management Commission.

On June 15, 2017, Rankin was appointed to the Executive Council of Nova Scotia as Minister of Environment.[24] Rankin hired the first dedicated crown prosecutor to handle cases related to the Environment Act, food safety, public health, meat inspection, fisheries and aquaculture, animal welfare, natural resources and the fur industry.[25] Rankin passed legislation to introduce a cap and trade system in Nova Scotia.[26] As Minister of Environment, Rankin joined other leaders across the continent agreeing to regional cooperation on carbon pricing in the Americas.[27]

On July 5, 2018, Rankin was moved to Minister of Lands and Forestry in a cabinet shuffle.[28]

Rankin resigned from cabinet in October 2020 and announced his candidacy for the leadership of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party.[29]

2021 Liberal leadership contest[edit]

On October 5, 2020, Rankin launched his campaign for Leadership of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, following Premier Stephen McNeil's announcement that he would be stepping down from his office. The other candidates in this contest were fellow former cabinet ministers Randy Delorey and Labi Kousoulis.

On February 6, 2021, Rankin was announced the Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, and premier-designate of Nova Scotia.[3]

Premier of Nova Scotia[edit]

On February 23, 2021, Iain Rankin became the 29th Premier of Nova Scotia, succeeding Stephen McNeil following a competitive leadership election.[30] Following his election, he called a legislative session to pursue his legislative agenda, including an increase of $100 a month for all adults on income assistance, the largest single increase in the program's history,[31] and efforts to address systemic racism and advance equality issues. These included passage of the Emancipation Day Act, which formally recognizes the day the British Parliament abolished slavery,[32] and the Land Titles Initiative Acceleration Act, a bill that will help speed up the process of settling land titles for people living in historically Black communities.[33] Rankin also appointed Andrea Anderson as the province's public service commissioner, the first person of colour to head the commission.[34] Rankin created new Offices for Equity and Anti-Racism Initiatives, as well as Mental Health and Addictions.[35] Rankin signed a $605 million agreement with the federal government to establish $10 per day childcare in Nova Scotia, by 2026.[36]

Through the new Office of Equity and Anti-Racism Initiatives, Rankin announced the creation of a working group that would help with race-based data collection. The data would be used to help improve equity, inclusion and diversity in health care and address racism.[37] To help address systemic racism in the justice system Rankin announced $4.8 million to establish the African Nova Scotian Justice Institute.[38]

On his first day in office, Rankin announced incentives for the purchase of new and used electric vehicles as well as energy efficiency support for low-income Nova Scotians.[39] In his throne speech, Rankin announced a commitment to get Nova Scotia off coal by 2030, ten years earlier than previously planned.[40] The Environment Department was renamed Environment and Climate Change to highlight Rankin's commitment to the issue, and all mandate letters to ministers noted the need to consider climate change and for it to factor into their respective policy and program decisions.[41] The Rankin government announced 61 more wilderness areas, nature reserves and provincial parks.[42]

In recognition of Mi’kmaq people, language, and the significant geographical location, Rankin unveiled a new sign in Mi’kmaq, labelled "Pjila’si Unama’kik", at the causeway in Cape Breton, along with Mi’kmaq elders and chiefs.[43]

The Rankin government invested $5 million to help make the sports more inclusive and accessible. The biggest investment in community and amateur sport in recent history.[44]

Former premier Rodney MacDonald joined Rankin, in Mabou, to announce the creation of a satellite campus in Mabou for the Gaelic College, called Beinn Mhabu. The province invested 1.92 million to renovate St Joseph’s convent. It opened in September, of 2023.[45] Rankin was also responsible for launching a new Forest innovation Centre at the Nova Scotia Community College. The first forestry training facility in the province.[46]

In April 2021, following a spike in COVID-19 cases, Rankin enacted lockdown measures which brought case numbers down, and case numbers remained low for the remainder of his tenure.[47] Nova Scotia maintained the highest vaccination rates in Canada.[48][better source needed] Rankin launched a plan to add 264 new long-term care beds and replace 1,298 beds at 14 nursing homes and three residential care facilities across the province.[49]

In June 2021, with the Liberal government enjoying a 75% approval rating, Rankin called for an election.[50] While the Liberals focused on their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Progressive Conservatives ran a campaign that was largely focused on the ongoing Healthcare crisis in Nova Scotia.[51] Despite starting the campaign with a lead of 8 points in the polls,[52] the Progressive Conservatives, led by Tim Houston, won a majority government. This marked the first time since 2006 that the Progressive Conservatives had won an election in Nova Scotia. Rankin claimed full responsibility for the loss.[53]

On January 5, 2022, Rankin announced that he will resign as leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party once a new leader is chosen.

Personal life[edit]

Rankin was convicted of impaired driving in 2003.[54] He is married to Mary Chisholm.[55] Rankin and Chisholm have a daughter, Freya Rose Rankin, born in November 2021.[56]

Bills introduced[edit]

Assembly Act Title Date
Assembly 64, Session 1 Carbon Rebate Act November 4, 2021
Assembly 64, Session 1 Clean Electricity and Technology Tax Credit Act April 3, 2023
Assembly 64, Session 1 Clean Hydrogen Tax Credit Act April 12, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Energy Efficiency Leader Act April 3, 2023
Assembly 64, Session 1 Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (amended) April 6, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Green Fund Protection Act November 1, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Health Protection Act (amended) April 19, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Judicial Appointments Act April 12, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Public Utilities Act (amended) November 4, 2021
Assembly 64, Session 1 Ratepayers Protection Act March 31, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Redressing Harm and Environmental Racism Act October 18, 2021
Assembly 64, Session 1 Sales Tax Act (amended) October 27, 2022
Assembly 64, Session 1 Time Definition Act(amended) November 3, 2021
Assembly 64, Session 1 Workers' Compensation Act (amended) October 14, 2021
Assembly 64, Session 1 Youth Food Security Act March 23, 2022
Assembly 63, Session 2 Biodiversity Act March 25, 2019
Assembly 63, Session 1 Environment Act (amended) September 29, 2017
Assembly 62, Session 3 Halifax Rifles Armoury Association (repealed) November 10, 2016
Assembly 62, Session 2 176 Otter Lake Landfill Act * May 20, 2016

Electoral record[edit]

2021 Nova Scotia Liberal Party Leadership Election
Candidate Ballot 1 Ballot 2
Name Votes Points Votes Points
Iain Rankin 3,075








Labi Kousoulis 2,904








Randy Delorey 1,895




TOTAL 7,881 5,500 7,624 5,500
2021 Nova Scotia general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Iain Rankin 5,181 54.38 +4.48
Progressive Conservative Bill Healy 2,320 24.35 +0.64
New Democratic Raymond Theriault 1,647 17.29 -3.78
Green Harry Ward 250 2.62 -1.32
Independent Dawn Edith Penney 90 0.94
Atlantica Dessire G. Miari 40 0.42 -0.96
Total valid votes 9,528 99.69
Total rejected ballots 30 0.31
Turnout 9,558 55.68
Eligible voters 17,165
Liberal hold Swing +1.92
2017 Nova Scotia general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Iain Rankin 4,272 49.90 -2.03
Progressive Conservative Tim Kohoot 2,030 23.71 +4.85
New Democratic Linda Moxsom-Skinner 1,804 21.07 -4.83
Green Kai Trappenberg 337 3.94 +0.44
Atlantica Matt Mansfield 118 1.38 +1.38
Total valid votes 8,561 100.0  
Total rejected ballots 37 0.43
Turnout 8,598 53.87
Eligible voters 15,962
2013 Nova Scotia general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Iain Rankin 4,471 51.93 +33.78
New Democratic Linda Moxsom-Skinner 2,230 25.90 -44.31
Progressive Conservative Bruce Pretty 1,608 18.86 +10.17
Green Thomas Trappenberg 300 3.50 +0.55


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  2. ^ "Nova Scotia votes: Riding-by-riding results for Halifax region". Metro. October 8, 2013. Archived from the original on February 28, 2014. Retrieved 2016-03-20.
  3. ^ a b "Iain Rankin will be next premier of Nova Scotia | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved 2021-02-17.
  4. ^ Gorman, Michael (January 5, 2022). "Iain Rankin to step down as N.S. Liberal Party leader". CBC News Nova Scotia.
  5. ^ District 47: Timberlea-Prospect cbc.ca
  6. ^ "MSVU alum named Premier-designateOf Nova Scotia".
  7. ^ "Meet Iain - Iain Rankin MLA - Timberlea - Prospect". Archived from the original on 2018-09-04. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  8. ^ "The Diplomatic Potential of Canada: Soft Power in Decline?" (PDF).
  9. ^ "Hon. Iain Rankin".
  10. ^ "Self-Storage Companies Expand in Nova Scotia, Canada". 28 November 2017.
  11. ^ "Demand for storage units on rise in N.S."
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  13. ^ "Hundreds gather in N.S. to celebrate provinces intention to ban dog-tethering". CTV News. February 1, 2014. Retrieved 2016-03-21.
  14. ^ "Halifax lawn signs target speeders with message to slow down". CBC News. October 28, 2014. Retrieved 2016-03-21.
  15. ^ "Otter Lake landfill bill causes commotion". The Chronicle Herald. May 20, 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-23.
  16. ^ "Dirty debate: Halifax city council concerned about Otter Lake landfill". Metro. Halifax. May 18, 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-23.
  17. ^ "City council flips its municipal lid over new Otter Lake legislation". The Coast. May 18, 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-23.
  18. ^ Hansard (2016-12-16). "Assembly Matters, Wednesday, May 18, 2016". Nova Scotia Legislature. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  19. ^ Devet, Robert (2016-04-08). "Community Services Standing Committee to Department: "Reinstate funding to Community Living group"". Nova Scotia Advocate. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  20. ^ Laroche, Jean (November 7, 2016). "Disabled Nova Scotians roundly criticize Accessibility Act". CBC News. Retrieved March 14, 2022.
  21. ^ Communications Nova Scotia (2018-05-11). "Accessibility Act to Make Province More Accessible". Government of Nova Scotia. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  22. ^ Spurr, Bill (June 6, 2021). "Nova Scotia Home for Coloured children commemorates 100 years with virtual event". SaltWire Network.
  23. ^ "McNeil announces summer shuffle for Nova Scotia cabinet". The Vanguard. July 24, 2015. Archived from the original on July 18, 2018. Retrieved 2016-02-20.
  24. ^ "Stephen McNeil shuffles cabinet, but vows not to change course". CBC News. June 15, 2017. Retrieved 2017-06-15.
  25. ^ "N.S. to hire environment prosecutor to 'hold people and companies accountable' - Halifax | Globalnews.ca". Global News. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  26. ^ Laroche, Jean (February 16, 2018). "Nova Scotia's cap-and-trade system inching forward". CBC News. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  27. ^ "Leaders Commit to Regional Cooperation on Carbon Pricing in the Americas". Environmental Defense Fund. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  28. ^ "Premier shuffles cabinet, puts emphasis on mining sector". CBC News. July 5, 2018. Retrieved 2018-07-05.
  29. ^ "2nd Liberal to enter N.S. leadership race wants more action on climate change". CBC News. October 5, 2020. Retrieved 2021-02-04.
  30. ^ "Iain Rankin will be next premier of Nova Scotia".
  31. ^ Gorman, Michael (April 16, 2021). "Progressive Conservative bill would require reduction targets for child poverty". CBC News. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  32. ^ Gorman, Michael (April 13, 2021). "Nova Scotia to begin marking Emancipation Day on Aug. 1". CBC News. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
  33. ^ Laroche, Jean. "Proposed N.S. law aims to make it easier for Black families to get land titles". CBC News. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
  34. ^ "Liberals pass inaugural budget with Iain Rankin as premier".
  35. ^ Gorman, Michael (Feb 22, 2021). "Rankin's cabinet to step up focus on housing, climate change". CBC News. Retrieved March 14, 2022.
  36. ^ "Federal-Provincial Agreement Will Transform Child Care, Reduce Costs for Families".
  37. ^ Edwards, Danielle (2022-03-04). "N.S. Black community, officials say more race-based data needed on COVID-19 pandemic". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  38. ^ "African Nova Scotian Justice Institute Launched".
  39. ^ "Nova Scotia to offer rebates for electric vehicles, home energy upgrades".
  40. ^ "Rankin government pledges focus on environment, equality, economic recovery in throne speech".
  41. ^ Gorman, Michael (February 22, 2021). "Rankin's cabinet to step up focus on housing, climate change". CBC News. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  42. ^ "Liberal Government Dedicates More Parks and Wilderness Areas As Protected". saltwire.com. 2021-04-26. Retrieved 2023-09-28.
  43. ^ MacDonald, Rankin (July 14, 2021). "Mi'kmaq sign welcomes motorists to Cape Breton". The Inverness Oran. Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  44. ^ Communications Nova Scotia (2018-05-11). "Funding to Remove Barriers to Sport, Recreation, Coaching". Government of Nova Scotia. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  45. ^ Communications Nova Scotia (2018-05-11). "Investment to Create Gaelic College Satellite Campus in Mabou". Government of Nova Scotia. Retrieved 2022-03-14.
  46. ^ "Forest innovation centre will aim to train workers for industry's future".
  47. ^ "All N.S. schools, non-essential stores to close for 2 weeks as entire province locks down".
  48. ^ "COVID-19 vaccination in Canada". 15 January 2021.
  49. ^ "Government Adding More Than 260 New Long-Term Care Beds, Replacing Hundreds More".
  50. ^ Tarrant, David (August 20, 2021). "Lessons from Nova Scotia's historic election". Toronto Sun. Retrieved November 22, 2021.
  51. ^ Gorman, Michael (July 22, 2021). "Tories release full election platform, with big spending on health care". CBC News. Retrieved November 22, 2021.
  52. ^ "Premiers' Performance: Ford and Kenney's popularity & political fortunes bear brunt of pandemic management". 9 June 2021.
  53. ^ "MacPolitics: Iain Rankin Opens Up On Election Loss - 'I take Full Responsibility For Loss' & Discusses Future". The Macdonald Notebook. 4 September 2021. Retrieved 10 November 2021.
  54. ^ "Nova Scotia premier on defensive over drunk driving charges he faced years ago". Atlantic. 8 July 2021. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
  55. ^ JOHN DeMONT: Rankin vows generational, ecological change if elected Liberal leader Halifax Chronicle Herald
  56. ^ Twitter https://twitter.com/iaintrankin/status/1460334483434090506. Retrieved 2022-01-05. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]