Jim Wilson (Canadian politician)

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Jim Wilson
Member of the Ontario Provincial Parliament
for Simcoe-Grey
Simcoe West (1990-1999)
Assumed office
September 6, 1990
Preceded by George McCague
Leader of the Opposition in Ontario
In office
July 2, 2014 – September 14, 2015
Preceded by Tim Hudak
Succeeded by Patrick Brown
Leader of the Ontario PC Party
In office
July 2, 2014 – May 9, 2015
Preceded by Tim Hudak
Succeeded by Patrick Brown
Personal details
Born (1963-04-04) April 4, 1963 (age 53)
Alliston, Ontario
Political party Progressive Conservative
Residence Wasaga Beach, Ontario
Occupation Civil servant

Jim Wilson (born April 4, 1963) is a politician in Ontario, Canada. He is a Progressive Conservative member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario who was elected in 1990 and represents the riding of Simcoe—Grey. On July 2, 2014, Wilson was chosen by his caucus to serve as interim leader of the party and Leader of the Opposition following the resignation of Tim Hudak. He continued to serve as Leader of the Opposition until September 2015 when new party leader, Patrick Brown entered the legislature through a by-election.[1][2]


Wilson was educated at St. Michael's College at the University of Toronto where he served on Student Council President and as a member of the university's governing council. During and after his graduation, he worked as an assistant to Ontario Management Board chair George McCague, and subsequently worked for federal cabinet minister Perrin Beatty.


In opposition[edit]

In the 1990 provincial election, he was elected in Simcoe West by 1940 votes over New Democrat Leo Loserit.[3] The NDP won a majority government in this election, while the Tories won only 20 seats of 130 for third-party status. In September 1991, Wilson was appointed as party Critic for health policy.

Harris government[edit]

There was a significant swing to the Progressive Conservatives in the 1995 provincial election, and Wilson was re-elected by almost 20,000 votes over his nearest opponent.[4] On June 26, 1995, he was appointed Minister of Health in the government of Mike Harris.[5]

In October 1997, Wilson was named as Minister of Energy, Science and Technology.[6]

After redistribution, Wilson ran for re-election in the 1999 provincial election in the new seat of Simcoe—Grey. He defeated his nearest opponent, Liberal Norman Sandberg, by over 19,000 votes.[7]

Provincial Government of Mike Harris
Cabinet Posts (2)
Predecessor Office Successor
Norm Sterling Minister of Energy, Science & Technology
Chris Stockwell (Energy only)
Ruth Grier Minister of Health
Elizabeth Witmer

Eves Government[edit]

He was retained in the Energy, Science and Technology portfolio until April 2002, when Ernie Eves replaced Mike Harris as Premier.[8] Eves named Wilson as Minister of Northern Development and Mines, and Chair of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation.[9] On June 17, 2003, he was also named Minister of Environment.

Provincial Government of Ernie Eves
Cabinet Posts (2)
Predecessor Office Successor
Chris Stockwell Minister of Environment
2003 (June–October)
Leona Dombrowsky
Dan Newman Minister of Northern Development and Mines
Rick Bartolucci

Opposition (2nd time)[edit]

The Progressive Conservatives were defeated in the 2003 election, although Wilson retained Simcoe—Grey by a reduced margin.[10] In 2004, he supported John Tory's successful bid to replace Eves as party leader. In 2009, he supported Tim Hudak's successful bid to replace Tory as party leader.

He was re-elected to the Ontario Legislature on October 10, 2007 defeating his nearest opponent by 11,711 votes.[11] He was re-elected again in the 2011 election for his sixth term defeating his nearest opponent by 14,935 votes.[12] He was re-elected by a slimmer margin in the 2014 provincial election.[13]

Under Hudak, from 2011 to 2014, Wilson served as Opposition House Leader.

Interim leadership[edit]

Following Hudak's resignation, Wilson was chosen interim leader by caucus on July 2, 2014, defeating John Yakabuski and Randy Hillier and served until a leadership election was held in May 2015 which chose Patrick Brown as Hudak's permanent successor. In the fall of 2015, Wilson then returned to his role as Opposition House Leader.[14]


  1. ^ "PC Leader Patrick Brown projected to win in Simcoe North byelection". CBC News. September 3, 2015. Retrieved September 3, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Patrick Brown elected leader of Ontario Progressive Conservatives". Toronto Sun. May 9, 2015. Retrieved May 9, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Ontario election: Riding-by-riding voting results". The Globe and Mail. September 7, 1990. p. A12. 
  4. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots by Candidate". Elections Ontario. June 8, 1995. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  5. ^ "Mike Harris' cabinet". The Spectator. Hamilton, Ont. June 27, 1995. p. A7. 
  6. ^ Rusk, James; Mackie, Richard (October 10, 1997). "Premier to shuffle cabinet Ministers to move out of hot portfolios: Snobelen from Education, Wilson from Health". The Globe and Mail. p. A1. 
  7. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots by Candidate". Elections Ontario. June 3, 1999. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  8. ^ "Ontario Cabinet". The Spectator. Hamilton, Ont. June 18, 1999. p. C8. 
  9. ^ "Ont-Cabinet". Toronto, Ont: Canadian Press NewsWire. April 15, 2002. 
  10. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots by Candidate". Elections Ontario. October 2, 2003. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  11. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots Cast for Each Candidate" (PDF). Elections Ontario. October 10, 2007. p. 14 (xxiii). Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  12. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots Cast for Each Candidate" (PDF). Elections Ontario. October 6, 2011. p. 16. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  13. ^ "General Election by District: Simcoe-Grey". Elections Ontario. June 12, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Progressive Conservatives pick Jim Wilson as interim leader". Toronto Star. July 2, 2014. Retrieved July 2, 2014. 

External links[edit]