The New Councillor for Ward 3 is...Peter Leon
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The New Councillor for Ward 3 is…Peter Leon

Council chooses Doug Holyday's preferred successor.

After hearing from a wide array of candidates vying to replace former councillor Doug Holyday (Ward 3, Etobicoke Centre), ranging from a self-described expert in transcendental meditation to a Toronto police spokesperson, city council has appointed Etobicoke resident Peter Leon to the office. Though he’s now an MPP and was not at council today, Holyday had endorsed Leon, who he met through work on Etobicoke community groups.

Mayor Rob Ford preferred another candidate, former Tory MPP Chris Stockwell—somewhat surprisingly, since Stockwell had once run against Ford’s father, Doug Ford Sr. Stockwell had also been endorsed by Etobicoke community council last week (that’s the group of councillors from that part of the city, which heard from all the candidates and made a non-binding recommendation to council).

Leon, 71 years old, worked in sales, and at various points served as chair of Etobicoke Hydro and as a member of the Etobicoke library board. Also a conservative, he won on a third ballot with 26 votes (Stockwell received 16) with the support of a cross-section of councillors, many of whom cited Holyday’s endorsement as a key factor in their decision. When he addressed councillors earlier today Leon assured them that he was only interested in serving as a caretaker for the ward until the scheduled 2014 election, and would not use the seat as a way to further additional political aspirations—also a factor in his selection.

Leon will be sworn in immediately, and begin his work as councillor by participating in this month’s regular council meeting, which will resume later this afternoon.