This is the first in a series highlighting the six candidates for Ward 1 Councillor in the upcoming municipal election.The Silhouette will be profiling each candidate in advance of the election on Monday, Oct. 27.
Ward 1 Councillor candidate Aidan Johnson has a straightforward vision for Hamilton: protecting the environment and creating a green, accessible, job-filled economy.
Johnson grew up in Westdale, and did part of his undergraduate studies at McMaster University. He now works a staff Lawyer for Legal Aid Ontario in downtown Hamilton, following his work in corporate law with Borden Ladner Gervais LLP in Toronto. In high school, Johnson was involved in a campaign that challenged the Hamilton Public School Board to create policy that would protect the safety of LGBTQI students. His involvement in this campaign had him featured in Maclean’s “Young Canadian Leader to Watch For” annual listing that year.
Johnson has also dedicated his time to volunteering in the community with HIV-AIDS outreach, fundraising with PEN Canada, and is currently a member of the Ward 1 Participatory Budget Advisory Committee.
“What I am looking to do is use my financial background, my legal skills, and above all my advocacy skills to fight for all the things we need in Hamilton,” said Johnson.
His platform is focused on safer, complete streets, higher conservation standards for Cootes Paradise, fighting water pollution in Lake Ontario, growing the downtown economy and advocating for Light Rail Transit. He also wants to target crime that victimizes students in Westdale.
Johnson identifies environmental issues as his primary motivation for entering the race.
“Increasing conservation standards at Cootes Paradise, and creating an even more bio-diverse Cootes Paradise is certainly a key McMaster issue,” said Johnson. “We don’t do enough to protect it and we don’t do enough to protect the connecting land and water that feed and sustain Cootes Paradise.”
Johnson directly supports the McMarsh project and also cites the restoration effort as one of the most important projects at McMaster.
Photo credit: Samantha Craggs/CBC