Jane Pitfield

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Jane Pitfield
Toronto City Councillor for Ward 26 Don Valley West
In office
1 December 2000 – 30 November 2005
Preceded by Riding established
Succeeded by John Parker
Toronto City Councillor for Ward 1 East York
In office
24 September 1998 – 30 November 2000
Serving with Michael Prue and Case Ootes[nb 1]
Preceded by Riding established
Succeeded by Riding abolished
School trustee for Ward 4 East York
In office
1 December 1994 – 31 December 1997
Serving with Ruth Goldhar[nb 2]
Succeeded by Riding abolished
Personal details
Born 1954 (age 63–64)
Peterborough, Ontario
Spouse(s) Robert H. Pitfield
Children 4
Residence Pontiac, Quebec
Occupation Sales person

Jane Pitfield c. 1954 was a Toronto city councillor, representing one of the two Don Valley West wards. She ran unsuccessfully for Mayor of Toronto in 2006.


A graduate of Queen's University, she worked for several years with Procter & Gamble. In 1989 she founded Concerned Citizens of Leaside to oppose a large development project. She is also the author of Leaside, a history of the neighbourhood.[1]

She is married to Robert H. Pitfield, a former senior executive with the Bank of Nova Scotia and now Executive Chairman of the Board, TravelEdge Group.[2] They have four children, three daughters and a son. Her uncle-in-law is Ward C. Pitfield, Jr., who was chairman of brokerage firm Dominion Securities. Another uncle-in-law, Senator Michael Pitfield, was clerk of the Privy Council under former prime minister Pierre Trudeau.[3]


School trustee[edit]

In 1994, she was elected as a school board trustee in East York's Ward 4.[4][nb 2]

City councillor[edit]

In the first post-amalgamation election in 1997, she ran for city councillor in Ward 1, East York but came third behind winners Michael Prue and Case Ootes.[5][nb 3] It was later decided, however, that the East York ward was too large for only two councillors. A by-election was held to elect a third councillor and she won this race.[6][7] In May 1999 she became chair of the East York Community Council.[8] In November 2000 she was elected in a reorganized council in the riding/ward of Don Valley West.[9][nb 4]

During the 2003 term of office she served as chair of the Works Committee. In 2004, she proposed a 9% water rate increase in early 2004, a higher figure than city staff had recommended. Following intervention from the office of mayor David Miller, the increase was reduced to 6%. Pitfield justified the proposed increase by saying, "This is not to be thought of as taxation. It's a user fee. If you want to pay less, you can use less."[10]

A Globe and Mail report from March 2005 indicated that Pitfield canvassed for Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario leader John Tory during his provincial by-election campaign in Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey.[11]

After the 2003 election, Miller called in councillors to pick committee chair heads. Pitfield says she did not get a call. "So I called him", she said. She asked to be chair of the works committee, and was appointed. In the mid-term committee chair shuffle, Pitfield left the works and budget committees and joined the audit committee and co-chaired the aboriginal affairs committee.[12]

2006 mayoral race[edit]

On November 29, 2005 Pitfield announced that she would run against mayor David Miller in the 2006 municipal election.

Pitfield promised to hold off on future tax increases and adopted the slogan, "Always think like a taxpayer".[13] Pitfield also stated that the Mayor should be known as the "Billion Dollar Man" for increasing the city's spending by $1.3 billion since he became mayor in 2003.[14] Miller responded by observing that Toronto's share of the new spending was only $275 million, with the remainder coming from the provincial and federal governments.[15] He later added that most of the spending "is new investment we've secured from provincial and federal government to meet the needs of our city in public transit, in housing, or the 58 new child care centres that we've opened in Toronto this month alone, in Toronto's poorest neighbourhoods".[16]

Pitfield's campaign team included Michael Marzolini, pollster and strategist for former Liberal prime minister Jean Chrétien, and John Foden, Public Affairs consultant. Ontario PC Party treasurer Vic Gupta, who was deputy campaign manager for John Tory's 2003 run for mayor, was on Pitfield's campaign team but bowed out in June 2006, and became lobbyist for the Toronto Port Authority.[17]

In September 2006, Pitfield voted in favour of a bid by Toronto City Council to purchase a landfill site that she had previously spoken against. She claimed that she voted yes in error and admitted to being embarrassed by her mistake. She indicated that she would try to have her vote changed in the official records but wasn't able to reopen the debate to change her vote.[18]

On September 29, the National Post released a survey conducted by Ipsos-Reid that suggested Pitfield was a stronger challenger to Miller than many people believed. The poll showed that of decided voters, 55% would support Miller, while 40% would support Pitfield. In the "absolutely certain" voter category, 51% would support Miller while 46% would support Pitfield.[19] On the same day, former Liberal Party of Canada President Stephen LeDrew also entered the contest.

Her platform to be mayor included a public housing program focused on home ownership for low-income families. She accused Miller of being soft on crime and called for a police helicopter, a weapons court and restrictions on bail for individuals with outstanding violent crime charges. She was in favour of incinerating Toronto's garbage as part of a waste-to energy scheme, as opposed to transporting it by road to Michigan,[20] and set a 60% diversion rate for recycling. She supported building two kilometres of subway per year.

Miller won the contest by a significant margin.

2006 results[edit]

2006 Toronto municipal election, Mayor of Torontoedit
Candidate Total votes % of total votes Notes
David Miller 332,969 56.97
Jane Pitfield 188,932 32.32
Stephen LeDrew 8,078 1.38
35 other candidates 54,508 9.33
Total valid votes 584,484 100.00

For full results, see Toronto municipal election, 2006.

After mayoral attempt[edit]

In 2008, Pitfield was elected president of the Caledon Heritage Foundation. She and her family own a 19th-century house in Caledon which they are in the process of restoring.[21]

In 2008, she published a book called Leaside which chronicles the foundation and growth of her local neighbourhood called Leaside.[22]

2010 municipal election[edit]

In January 2010, Pitfield announced that she would run for councillor in East York, Ward 29, to replace Case Ootes following his retirement.[23] She was defeated by newcomer Mary Fragedakis by nearly 2,500 votes.

2010 results[edit]

2010 Toronto election, Ward 29
Candidate Votes[24] %
Mary Fragedakis 7,430 41.8
Jane Pitfield 4,966 28.0
Jennifer Wood 4,269 24.0
Chris Caldwell 885 5.0
John Richardson 138 0.8
Mike Restivo 81 0.4
Total 17,769 100.0

Pontiac Warden[edit]

In 2017, Pitfield was elected Warden of the Pontiac Regional County Municipality under her maiden name Jane Toller.[25] She moved to Pontiac becoming a local business person (operator of Pontiac Conference Centre)[26] and President of Tourism Pontiac.

Her great-great grandfather, George Bryson, served as Warden of Pontiac from 1862-1863.[27]

2017 results[edit]

2017 Quebec municipal election, MRC Pontiac
Candidate Votes[28] %
Jane Toller 3,597 47.0
Raymond Durocher 1,366 17.8
Linda Davis 1,045 13.7
Charlotte L'Ecuyer 828 10.8
Pierre Frechette 817 10.7
Total 7,653 100.0



  1. ^ A special by-election was held in this ward nine months after the original election to elect a 3rd councillor.
  2. ^ a b In this election two trustees were elected per ward. Results for ward 4 were: Ruth Goldhar 3,534; Jane Pitfield 3,318; Bob Brown 2,009; Stuart Koskie 1,156; Thomas Irwin 923.
  3. ^ In this election, two candidates were elected in each ward. Results were: Michael Prue 22440; Case Ootes 8608; Jane Pitfield 6926; Michael Tziretas 6349; Elizabeth Rowley 5707; Bob Dale 4709; George Vasilopoulos 4275; Paul Fernandes 3156; Paul Robinson 2885; Hortencia Fotopoulos 663; Edward Wigglesworth 368.
  4. ^ The 2000 election reduced the number of councillors from 57 to 44. Councillors were elected on the basis of two per federal riding boundaries. Joanne Flint represented the other part of the Don Valley West riding.


  1. ^ "Former City Councillor Jane Pitfield". City of Toronto. Retrieved October 27, 2013. 
  2. ^ https://www.bdc.ca/en/about/corporate_governance/board_of_directors/pages/robertpitfield.aspx
  3. ^ Sinclair, Stewart (December 10, 2005). "Executive Decision: Eat the elephant one bite at a time". The Globe and Mail. p. B3. 
  4. ^ "School Board - Final results". Toronto Star. 16 November 1994. p. A8. 
  5. ^ "Megacity Vote New council will be full of old faces". The Globe and Mail. 11 November 1997. p. A12. 
  6. ^ Spears, John (22 September 1998). "East York ready for unique vote". Toronto Star. p. 1. 
  7. ^ "Councillor elected". The Globe and Mail. 25 September 1998. p. A8. 
  8. ^ Spears, John (12 May 1999). "Six local councils get new leaders". Toronto Star. p. 1. 
  9. ^ "GTA Results". The Globe and Mail. 14 November 2000. p. A28. 
  10. ^ Vanessa Lu, "Price of water to rise but by how much?", Toronto Star, 4 February 2004, B3; Vanessa Lu, "Decision on water rate reversed", Toronto Star, 5 February 2004, B4.
  11. ^ "City councillors past, present turn out to help Tory get elected", Globe and Mail, 18 March 2005, A11.
  12. ^ Kuitenbrouwer, Peter (December 1, 2005). "The prime of Ms. Jane Pitfield: Energetic councillor to run for mayor". National Post. p. A16. 
  13. ^ "Jane Pitfield to take on Miller", CTV Toronto, 29 November 2005, 19:52 report. CTV.ca
  14. ^ Royson James, "Fed up with Dave? Meet Jane", Toronto Star, 6 May 2006, B01.
  15. ^ Jeff Gray, "Pitfield vows to fight tax hike", Globe and Mail, 29 March 2006, A13. Pitfield was unable to provide the specific increase in municipal spending when questioned by reporters.
  16. ^ John Spears and Paul Moloney, "Candidates battle over tax cuts", Toronto Star, 2 October 2006, E9.
  17. ^ (National Post August 31, 2006)
  18. ^ (Toronto Sun, Toronto Star September 21, 2006))
  19. ^ James Cowan, "Poll reveals 'horse race'", National Post, 29 September 2006, A01.
  20. ^ Jane Pitfield to take on Miller in 2006, CTV.ca. November 11, 2005.
  21. ^ Former Toronto councillor elected president of Caledon Heritage Foundation. Caledon Citizen. May 15, 2008. Caledoncitizen.com Archived 2012-07-24 at Archive.is
  22. ^ Leblanc, Dave (26 April 2013). "Celebrating a centennial with a walk through Leaside". The Globe and Mail. p. G6. 
  23. ^ "Pitfield eyes political comeback". The Globe and Mail, January 7, 2010.
  24. ^ "Councillor Ward 29, City of Toronto elections page". City of Toronto. Archived from the original on January 8, 2014. Retrieved October 27, 2013. 
  25. ^ "Jane Toller elected Warden of the MRC Pontiac". Chip 101.9. November 7, 2017. Retrieved December 10, 2017. 
  26. ^ https://art-life-you.ca/2017/10/15/meet-the-candidates-for-warden-mrc-pontiac/
  27. ^ https://www.mrcpontiac.qc.ca/en/jane-toller-sworn-mrc-pontiac-warden/
  28. ^ "MRC Pontiac elections page". MRC Pontiac. Retrieved December 12, 2017. 


External links[edit]