Mike Sullivan (Canadian politician)
|Member of Parliament|
May 2, 2011 
|Preceded by||Alan Tonks|
November 9, 1952 |
Detroit, Michigan, United States
|Political party||New Democrat|
|Alma mater||University of Toronto|
Michael D. "Mike" Sullivan (born November 9, 1952) is an American-born Canadian politician, who was elected to represent the riding of York South—Weston in the 2011 election. He is a member of the New Democratic Party (NDP).
Sullivan graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1973. From February 1974 to November 1984, Sullivan worked for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) where he was radio master control operator. From 1984 until his election to the House of Commons in 2011, Sullivan was a national representative for Communications Energy and Paperworkers where he worked with CBC, Sun Media and Torstar newspapers.
Sullivan first made a name for himself as the driving force behind a grassroots community campaign that called for substantial improvements to the original plan for an express rail service between Toronto’s international airport and its downtown. Among other things, Sullivan called for a stop in Weston and in other neighbourhoods along the line, tunnelling where necessary to preserve local neighbourhoods, electrification, affordable fares and full integration with the existing public transit network.
Sullivan’s activism got the attention of the local NDP’s candidate recruitment efforts and he was nominated to be the party’s candidate in the 2008 federal election. While he was unsuccessful, he finished a strong second and indicated he would consider running again.
Between 2008 and 2011, Sullivan continued his community work, including leading a coalition that called for turning the abandoned former site of a local Kodak plant into a hub for green manufacturing jobs. Thanks to Sullivan’s advocacy, a portion of the site will now be home to a TTC light-rail vehicle repair facility and house the Mount Dennis station of the new Eglinton LRT route.
In his second campaign for public office in 2011, Sullivan capitalized on his community work, high name recognition and the popularity of his party’s late leader, Jack Layton, to become the first federal New Democrat to win his riding since former party leader David Lewis in the early 1970s.
Since his election, Sullivan has championed a number of national and local causes, including being Parliament’s leading voice for the creation of a national database to track stolen cell phones. At Sullivan’s urging, the Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission mandated that Canadian wireless carriers create such a database which went live in late 2013. Sullivan has also lobbied for enhancing environmental protection of the Humber River and for including persons with disabilities under hate crimes legislation. He serves as the NDP’s Deputy Critic for Housing and Disability Issues and also chairs the NDP’s Rail Caucus.
Sullivan also is a member of the Standing Committee on Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities (SCOTIC) where he advocates for safer transportation of dangerous goods through communities in Canada.