Michael Coteau

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Michael Coteau
Michael Coteau - 2017 CFC Annual BBQ Fundraiser (36996970172) (cropped).jpg
Member of Parliament
for Don Valley East
Assumed office
September 20, 2021
Preceded byYasmin Ratansi
Minister of Community and Social Services
In office
February 26, 2018 – June 29, 2018
PremierKathleen Wynne
Preceded byHelena Jazeck
Succeeded byLisa MacLeod
Minister of Children and Youth Services
In office
June 13, 2016 – June 29, 2018
PremierKathleen Wynne
Preceded byTracy MacCharles
Succeeded byLisa MacLeod
Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport
In office
June 24, 2014 – June 13, 2016
PremierKathleen Wynne
Preceded byMichael Chan
Succeeded byEleanor McMahon
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
In office
February 11, 2013 – June 24, 2014
PremierKathleen Wynne
Preceded byMichael Chan
Succeeded byMichael Chan
Member of the Ontario Provincial Parliament
for Don Valley East
In office
October 6, 2011 – August 17, 2021
Preceded byDavid Caplan
Succeeded byAdil Shamji
Personal details
Born1972 (age 50–51)
Huddersfield, England
Political partyLiberal
SpouseLori Coteau
Residence(s)Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Alma materCarleton University (BA)
OccupationEducator, businessman

Michael Joseph Coteau[1] is a Canadian politician who serves as the Member of Parliament for Don Valley East in the House of Commons of Canada. From 2011 to 2021, he was a Liberal member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario representing the provincial district of Don Valley East in Toronto. He served in the Cabinet of Ontario under Premier Kathleen Wynne from 2013 to 2018 in several portfolios, including Citizenship and Immigration, Tourism, Culture and Sport and Community and Social Services. After the 2018 Ontario general election, Coteau was one of seven Liberals re-elected, and he subsequently ran in the 2020 Ontario Liberal Party leadership election, placing second with 16.9% of the vote.[2]

Coteau resigned as from the Legislative Assembly of Ontario on August 17, 2021 to run for his constituency's federal seat, vacated by Yasmin Ratansi, in the 44th Canadian general election.[3] He was elected with 59% of the vote.


Coteau was born in Huddersfield, England. His father is from Carriacou, Grenada and his mother is from Yorkshire, England. He came to Canada with his parents in 1976 and grew up in social housing in Flemingdon Park in North York.[4] Coteau's family was low-income and he had to borrow the money needed to cover his university application fee from a friend's father.[5] He attended Carleton University and graduated with a degree in history and political science.[6]

After graduation, he taught English in South Korea.[7]


Coteau was a Toronto District School Board Trustee for Ward 17, winning elections in 2003, 2006, and 2010.[6] As a trustee, he advocated for student nutrition, community use of space, and the use of educational technology.[6] He initiated the 'Community Use of Schools' motion that cut user fees and made schools more accessible to groups that offer programs for children.[6] He helped introduce nutritional changes in schools that supported healthy food programs and increased awareness of student hunger.[6] In addition to his work as a trustee, Coteau served as the executive director and chief executive officer of a national adult literacy firm, and worked as a community organizer in the Malvern area of Scarborough, Ontario with the United Way.[8] He also owned and operated his own small business.

Provincial politics[edit]

In 2011 he ran provincial election in the riding of Don Valley East. He won the election beating PC candidate Michael Lende by 7,645 votes.[9] He was re-elected in 2014.[10]

The Liberals won a minority government and Coteau was appointed as parliamentary assistant to the minister of tourism and culture. In 2013, after Kathleen Wynne replaced Dalton McGuinty as premier, Coteau was named Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.[11] He was one of ten members of the Wynne's cabinet with no prior cabinet experience.[12] In June 2014, Coteau was made Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport by Premier Kathleen Wynne, as well as Minister Responsible for the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games.[13] He made headlines advocating for children to be able to play street hockey. On February 16, 2016, it was announced that Coteau would add responsibility for anti-racism, responsible for establishing various anti-racism programs.[14] On June 13, 2016, he was appointed Minister of Children and Youth Services, and in particular worked collaboratively with parents to deliver a reformed Ontario Autism Program.[15] He also was subsequently appointed Minister of Community and Social Services, holding down three separate portfolios for the government.

In 2018, Coteau defeated Conservative candidate Denzil Minnan Wong, Toronto's deputy mayor, to win his third election in the North Toronto constituency.[16]

In June 2019, Coteau entered the race for leadership of the Ontario Liberal Party. Coteau said he had "a different vision" and would "restore decency to our politics".[17] At the leadership convention on March 7, 2020, he received 16.9% of the vote, finishing second behind the winner, Steven Del Duca.[18]

Federal Politics[edit]

On August 10, 2021, Coteau was nominated as the Liberal Party of Canada candidate in Don Valley East, ahead of the next Canadian Federal Election. He was elected on September 20, 2021.

Cabinet positions[edit]

Ontario provincial government of Kathleen Wynne
Cabinet posts (4)
Predecessor Office Successor
Helena Jaczek Minister of Community and Social Services
February 26, 2018 — July 29, 2018
Lisa MacLeod (as Minister of Children, Community and Social Services)
Tracy MacCharles Minister of Children and Youth Services
June 13, 2016 – June 29, 2018
Also responsible for Anti-Racism issues
Lisa MacLeod (as Minister of Children, Community and Social Services)
Michael Chan Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport
June 24, 2014 – June 13, 2016
Also responsible for the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games
Eleanor McMahon
Michael Chan Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
February 11, 2013 – June 24, 2014
Michael Chan

Electoral record[edit]

2021 Canadian federal election: Don Valley East
Party Candidate Votes % ±% Expenditures
Liberal Michael Coteau 22,356 59.90 +0.09
Conservative Penolope Williams 8,766 23.49 –0.43
New Democratic Simon Topp 4,618 12.37 +1.38
People's Peter De Marco 1,585 4.25 +2.92
Total valid votes 37,325 100.00
Total rejected ballots 470 1.24 +0.22
Turnout 37,795 59.12 –5.11
Eligible voters 63,934
Liberal hold Swing +0.26
Source: Elections Canada[19]
2018 Ontario general election: Don Valley East
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Michael Coteau 13,012 35.93 −22.80
Progressive Conservative Denzil Minnan-Wong 11,984 33.09 +8.75
New Democratic Khalid Ahmed 9,937 27.44 +15.48
Green Mark Wong 917 2.53 −0.83
Libertarian Justin Robinson 236 0.65
Freedom Wayne Simmons 131 0.36
Total valid votes 36,217 99.08
Total rejected, unmarked and declined ballots 337 0.92
Turnout 36,554 55.22
Eligible voters 66,192
Liberal hold Swing −15.78
Source: Elections Ontario[20][21]
2014 Ontario general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Michael Coteau 19,253 55.77 +4.69
Progressive Conservative Angela Kennedy 9,227 26.73 -0.46
New Democratic Akil Sadikali 4,492 13.01 -5.59
Green Christopher McLeod 1,264 3.66 +1.47
Freedom Wayne Simmons 287 0.83 +0.48
Total valid votes 34,523 100.0  
Liberal hold Swing +2.58
Source: Elections Ontario[10]
2011 Ontario general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Michael Coteau 16,342 51.08 -4.54
Progressive Conservative Michael Lende 8,604 26.89 +1.86
New Democratic Bob Hilliard 5,953 18.61 +7.95
Green Aren Bedrosyan 742 2.32 -2.72
Family Coalition Ryan Kidd 188 0.59 +0.03
Freedom Wayne Simmons 164 0.51 +0.23
Total valid votes 31,993 100.00




  1. ^ @ONPARLeducation (13 July 2022). "Within the halls of the Legislature are walls that contain the names of every Member of Provincial Parliament elected to Ontario's Legislature since 1867. The names for the 42nd Parliament were recently added. For the first time a Member's name was inscribed in Oji-Cree syllabics" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  2. ^ "Former cabinet minister Steven Del Duca elected new Ontario Liberal leader".
  3. ^ "Michael Coteau | Legislative Assembly of Ontario".
  4. ^ Moodie, Jim (18 September 2019). "'I think I know how to win'". Sudbury Star. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  5. ^ Devoy, Desmond (19 November 2019). "'I am the Liberal story': MPP Michael Coteau brings leadership campaign to Perth". Perth Courier. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  6. ^ a b c d e https://www.michaelcoteau.com/bio
  7. ^ Benzie, Robert; Ferguson, Rob (21 November 2011). "Rookie MPPs poised to take their seats as legislature opens". The Guelph Mercury. p. B7.
  8. ^ Peat, Don (6 October 2011). "Tories fail to break through in GTA". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 7 October 2011.
  9. ^ "Summary of Valid Ballots Cast for Each Candidate" (PDF). Elections Ontario. 6 October 2011. p. 4. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 March 2013. Retrieved 2 March 2014.
  10. ^ a b "General Election by District: Don Valley-East". Elections Ontario. June 12, 2014. Archived from the original on July 2, 2014.
  11. ^ "Ontario's new cabinet". Waterloo Region Record. Kitchener, Ont. 12 February 2013. p. A3.
  12. ^ Benzie, Robert (11 February 2013). "Wynne's Liberal cabinet to include 10 rookie ministers in sweeping shuffle". Toronto Star. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
  13. ^ Richard Brennan; Robert Benzie; Rob Ferguson (24 June 2014). "Kathleen Wynne warns financial cupboard is bare". Toronto Star.
  14. ^ "Ontario Establishing an Anti-Racism Directorate". Government of Ontario. 16 February 2016.
  15. ^ "Kathleen Wynne's shuffled cabinet features 40% women". CBC News. 13 June 2016.
  16. ^ "Liberals' veteran Michael Coteau defeats city councilor Denzil Minnan-Wong in Don Valley East". Toronto Star. 7 June 2018.
  17. ^ "Michael Coteau enters race to lead Ontario Liberals". Toronto Star. 16 June 2019.
  18. ^ Gibson, Victoria (7 March 2020). "Steven Del Duca named Ontario Liberal leader in first-ballot victory". iPolitics. Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  19. ^ "September 20, 2021 General Election Results Validated by the Returning Officer". Elections Canada. Retrieved 14 October 2021.
  20. ^ "Summary of Valid Votes Cast for each Candidate" (PDF). Elections Ontario. Retrieved 16 January 2019.
  21. ^ https://results.elections.on.ca/en/publications

External links[edit]