Provincial MPP Dave Levac looks toward setting a record as the longest standing provincial speaker of the house position.
Levac started his political career in 1999, running as a liberal because his ideals came closest to matching those of the liberal party’s. Levac viewed politics as the best way he could get further involved within his community. Levac had been involved with countless volunteer events to help improve the community. Levac was responsible for helping organize the Queen’s visit to Brantford in 1997.
Prior to beginning his political career in 1999, Levac spent 25 years as an educator. Including a 12 year run as an elementary school principal. Levac credits his role within the education system with providing him a training ground for his current role as speaker of the house. “I learned how to manage a classroom, read people and deal with different types of people.” Said Levac.
Levac was nominated for the role of speaker of the house by a Conservative MPP at the start of his fourth term. Levac’s nomination was seconded by a Liberal backbencher. Levac would then go onto win a 50 plus one drop-off ballot vote to become speaker. After being elected for a fifth time as the MPP of Brant, Levac became the first man in Ontario history to be elected for a second term as speaker of the house.
Levac describes his role as speaker as being neutral within Queens Park. “The speaker is neutral. No political stuff. No advertising or cheerleading.” Said Levac. Levac takes being neutral very serious. Levac does not even allow for people to accuse him of leaning to heavily to one side or another. Levac no longer goes to any Liberal party meetings, functions or events. “I had already lost many of my party ties and was more interested in doing what’s best for the people.” Said Levac. Levac believes there has been no situation in his role as speaker of the house where he could have been more neutral.
Levac said, “I know I’m doing a good job when both sides accuse me of being too hard on them.” Levac used that sentiment as part of his pitch for being reelected speaker of the house. “I convinced the people I had the proper demeanor. (MPPs) Know what you’re getting.” Said Levac. If Levac holds his position through the end of this term, he will become the longest serving speaker in Ontario history.