Theresa Oswald

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Theresa Oswald
Minister of Jobs and the Economy
In office
October 18, 2013 – November 3, 2014
Premier Greg Selinger
Preceded by Peter Bjornson
Succeeded by Kevin Chief
Minister of Health
In office
September 21, 2006 – October 18, 2013
Premier Gary Doer
Preceded by Tim Sale
Succeeded by Erin Selby
Minister of Healthy Living
In office
October 12, 2004 – September 21, 2006
Premier Gary Doer
Preceded by Jim Rondeau
Member of the Legislative Assembly
In office
June 3, 2003 – April 19, 2016
Preceded by Louise Dacquay
Succeeded by Janice Morley-Lecomte
Constituency Seine River
Personal details
Political party New Democratic Party
Occupation Vice-principal
High school English teacher

Theresa Oswald, is a politician in Manitoba, Canada. She was a New Democratic Party member of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba from 2003 to 2016 and a cabinet minister from 2004 until she stepped down in 2014 to unsuccessfully challenged Premier Greg Selinger for the party's leadership.

Early life[edit]

Oswald was born and raised in the St. Vital neighbourhood of Winnipeg, Manitoba, and was a teacher and school administrator for fifteen years before entering politics. She initially taught English, later serving as vice-principal at Victor Mager School, Winnipeg in the Louis Riel Division. In the latter capacity, she frequently worked with children and families who arrived in Canada from war-ravaged countries. Oswald has also been involved in local groups such as the Victoria Hospital, the Zoological Society of Manitoba and Take Pride Winnipeg!.

Political career[edit]

Oswald was part of the NDP's historic breakthrough in south-end Winnipeg in the provincial election of 2003, defeating incumbent Progressive Conservative Louise Dacquay in the riding of Seine River, 4,314 votes to 3,582. The NDP had never won this riding before. Oswald's campaign focused on greater access to post-secondary education and a tuition freeze for university students.

In August 2004, Oswald was appointed to lead a task-force committee looking for ways to encourage physical activity in the province's youth.

Oswald was appointed as a cabinet minister in Gary Doer's government on October 12, 2004, serving as the Minister responsible for Healthy Living, Seniors and Healthy Child Manitoba. In 2006, she was promoted to Minister of Health,[1] where she introduced bold new initiatives such as making a family doctor available to every Manitoban, new investments in women's and maternal health, promoted organ donation and introduced groundbreaking legislation to require life-saving heart defibrillators in public places. Her work to improve cancer care, including making all cancer drugs available to patients at no charge, was celebrated by the Canadian Cancer Society with a Diamond Jubilee medal.

She was re-elected with an increased majority in the 2007 provincial election.

In 2013 she was again promoted to lead the government's new flagship department of Jobs and the Economy, where she has since focused on expanding access to training programs to help increase the supply of skilled workers, expanded supports for start-ups and young entrepreneurs and introduced a boost to housing benefits for those on social assistance and the working poor.

Challenge to Selinger's leadership[edit]

Oswald resigned her cabinet position on November 3, 2014 along with Jennifer Howard, Erin Selby, Stan Struthers, and Andrew Swan due to concerns about Premier Selinger's leadership.[2] On December 21, 2014, Oswald declared her candidacy for the party leadership.[3] Oswald was defeated by a margin of 33 votes on the second ballot at the leadership convention on March 8, 2015 by Selinger.[4] Oswald remained an MLA after her defeat but did not run for re-election as an MLA in the 2016 provincial election.[5]

Electoral results[edit]

Manitoba general election, 2011: Seine River
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
New Democratic Theresa Oswald 5,500 52.88 −4.01
     Progressive Conservative Gord Steeves 4,569 43.93 +11.73
Liberal Troy Osiname 295 2.84 −8.04
Total valid votes 10,364
Rejected and declined ballots 36
Turnout 10,400 70.82
Electors on the lists 14,686

Manitoba general election, 2007: Seine River
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
New Democratic Theresa Oswald 5,786 56.89 $27,615.58
     Progressive Conservative Steve Andjelic 3,275 32.20 $31,015.94
Liberal Jennifer Lukovich 1,111 10.88 $4,915.77
Total valid votes 10,172 100.00
Rejected and declined ballots 41
Turnout 10,213 63.35
Electors on the lists 16,147


Manitoba general election, 2003: Seine River
Party Candidate Votes %
New Democratic Theresa Oswald 4,314 51.06
     Progressive Conservative Louise Dacquay 3,582 42.40
Liberal Luciano Vacca 553 6.55