BRITISH COLUMBIA
05/01/2014 08:08 EDT | Updated 05/02/2014 12:59 EDT

John Horgan Was The King Of Hearts, And 5 Other Surprising Things About The B.C. NDP Leader

John Horgan is officially the new leader of the B.C. NDP and the province's Opposition leader.

Horgan, the MLA for Malahat-Juan de Fuca since 2005, was acclaimed by the party on Thursday after fellow MLA Mike Farnworth left the race and no other candidate came forward. Horgan replaces Adrian Dix, who resigned as leader in the wake of the Liberals' 2013 election win.

Horgan has been the Opposition house leader and energy critic, but did you know he won his first election when he was in Grade 1?

Here are 6 fun facts about the new leader:

He's had harder jobs than politics

Born and raised on Vancouver Island, Horgan has driven delivery trucks, pulled lumber in a planer mill, lived in Ocean Falls making pulp and paper, and was even a plasterer's helper. He hated it at the time, but now he likes mixing cement and making rock walls. He also enjoys refinishing old furniture.

He was the King of Hearts

The politician's first elected term in office was in Grade 1, when he was voted King of Hearts on Valentine's Day. He was also student council president of Reynolds High School in Victoria.

He's a hockey and roadie dad

Horgan met his wife, Ellie, on the first day at university, and they have been together ever since. They have two sons; one is a jock and the other a musician. Horgan has tied skates as a hockey dad and lugged amplifiers as a roadie dad.

He's a self-admitted geek

Horgan loves science fiction, especially Star Trek. His father died when he was a toddler, so having been raised by his mom and older sister, he thinks Capt. Kathryn Janeway is the best of the Star Trek captains.

He's played team sports all his life

Horgan completed his Master's degree in Sydney, Australia. A failed surfer, he played cricket for fun and varsity basketball for competition.

A marshmallow ended his firefighting career

Horgan's older brother was a professional firefighter in Victoria, as is his nephew in Vancouver and cousin in Port Moody. The politician would have followed in the family vocation if a flaming marshmallow didn't fly off a roasting stick and land on his forehead as a child.

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