Former Toronto police chief Mark Saunders to run for Ontario PCs in June election

Former Toronto police chief Mark Saunders to run for Ontario PCs in June election

by Sue Jones
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Mark Saunders, Toronto’s former police chief, will run for the Ontario PC party in upcoming June election, the party announced Tuesday.

Toronto Shooting Politics 20181227

Mark Saunders resigned from the Toronto Police Service in 2020 and has had ties to the Ontario government since. (Christopher Katsarov/Canadian Press)

Mark Saunders, Toronto’s former police chief, will run for the Ontario PC party in the upcoming June election, the party announced Tuesday.

Saunders is set to run in the riding Don Valley West, which Liberal Kathleen Wynne has held since 2003.

Wynne, the province’s former premier who lost the last election to Doug Ford, has already announced she won’t run again. Instead, the Ontario Liberals will run Stephanie Bowman, a former board member of the Bank of Canada.

The PC party called Saunders a “dedicated community leader” in a news release and Saunders said he was honoured to be selected.

Ford, who has lost two cabinet members and a number of other candidates in the leadup to the June 2 election, welcomed the addition of Saunders.

“There is no one I’d rather have on the ballot in Don Valley West than Mark,” Ford said.

Saunders resigned from the Toronto Police Service in the summer of 2020 following five years on the job as the city’s first Black chief and has had ties to the Ontario government since.

Last May, the provincial government appointed him to be a special adviser on the redevelopment of Ontario Place, the former amusement park on the city’s waterfront. CBC News confirmed Tuesday he has resigned from that position, which paid up to $171,500 per year.

Saunders also served on Ontario’s COVID-19 distribution task force.

“This is a critical time in Ontario’s history as we recover from the impacts of the pandemic, and it is clear the Ontario PC Party has a strong plan to build a better future,” he said in a news release.

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