Born — June 28, 1951. Age 60.
Educated — Honours BA from the University of Toronto in French language and literature. Fluent in English, French and Spanish.
Private career — Started as airline booking agent; organizer for Canadian Airline Employees Association; senior negotiator with Canadian Auto Workers. First woman in North America to lead union negotiations with auto industry.
Political career — Elected MP for Toronto's Parkdale-High Park riding in 2006. Defeated in 2008, re-elected 2011. Served as NDP president, 2009-11.
Personal life — Married, three children.
For the record — "I've negotiated with some of our largest companies and bridging the gap between business and people and combining their interests is my life's work ... My history is one of bringing people together, of listening to all sides so that we can find concrete solutions."