The Liberals might soon have a star candidate in Toronto-Centre, the riding that was formerly represented by interim Liberal leader Bob Rae. On the weekend, former journalist Chrystia Freeland announced that she'd be seeking the Liberal nomination in the key riding.
The riding has been represented by Liberal heavyweights such as Rae and before that, former foreign minister Bill Graham. A byelection in the urban riding will be a crucial test for new Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and could be a preview of how the 2015 race will play out.
Freeland, a well-respected author and high-profile journalist would be a star candidate for Liberals.
Here are eight things you need to know about her.
1. She's a journalist. A very good journalist.
Freeland, 44, was a deputy editor and writer at the Globe and Mail, worked in the Moscow bureau of the Financial Times and was an editor-at-large for Reuters. She's no Mike Duffy.
2. And because of that, other journalists LOVE HER
The brilliant Chrystia Freeland returning to Canada: fascinating. The Igantieff comparisons churning - except that she's got E.Q *and* I.Q.— shinan govani (@shinangovani) July 27, 2013
And not just the Canadian ones!
3. Her husband. Also a journalist. He works for a little paper called the New York Times.
They live in New York City and have three children.
4. Freeland attended Harvard and Oxford.
She's also lived and worked in Moscow, Kiev, London and now New York. So cue the comparisons with Michael Ignatieff.
5. But judging from her media appearances she's not as wonky.
6. She's an award-winning author and an expert on global inequality
Her book Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else won the Lionel Gelber prize and she was invited to speak about it at TED. Of course, income inequality has been a big talking point for Trudeau and he has quoted Freeland on the subject in the past.
7. Freeland was born in Alberta
Freeland is Ukrainian-Canadian and, according to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, was involved with Edmonton's Ukrainian community in her youth. Interestingly Freeland's sister Halyna was a feminist and lawyer who reformed divorce laws in Alberta, taught at the University of Alberta and was a mentor to feminists in that province. Halyna died in 2007 from cancer.
8. She'll have stiff competition in Toronto Centre
Former CBC journalist Jennifer Hollett will seek the NDP nomination in the riding.
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