Profile sketches of three running for Premier of B.C.

Premier hopefuls at a glance

Political pundits have been predicting it for weeks. But on Monday, Premier John Horgan made it real by calling a snap election. Voters will go to the polls on October 24.

Here are brief profiles of the three candidates seeking to be Premier.

John Horgan, leader of the NDP in British Columbia:

Age: 61.

Family: Married Ellie in 1984; two grown sons, Nate and Evan. His father died when he was 18 months old. He was the youngest of four children. In 2008, Horgan was diagnosed with bladder cancer but was later declared cancer-free after surgery and treatment.

Education: Earned a bachelor of arts degree at Trent University in Peterborough, Ont., and a master of history from Sydney University in Australia.

Career: As a young man, he worked in a mill in B.C. and in a joinery. He later worked as a backroom strategist for the NDP and in 2001, he started a management and research consulting company that did work for private and public sector organizations. He was first elected to the legislature in 2005 and acclaimed as party leader in May 2014.

Riding: Langford-Juan de Fuca.

Quote: "I guess I want to get the election behind us, not for myself but for the people of B.C., because they can't afford to have partisan hectoring, uncertainty about whether bills will pass or not, which is what we've experienced over the past 3 1/2 years." — Horgan at a news conference on Monday.

Andrew Wilkinson, leader of British Columbia's Liberal party:

Age: 63.

Family: Married to Barbara Grantham. They have three grown children in their 20s.

Education: Holds degrees from the University of Alberta, Dalhousie University and Oxford University, where he attended as a Rhodes Scholar.

Career: He previously served as attorney general, justice minister, minister of advanced education, minister of technology, innovation and citizens' services. He also served as deputy minister of the British Columbia Ministry of Economic Development, and as deputy minister for intergovernmental relations in the premier's office for two years. Outside of politics, he has worked as a lawyer in Vancouver and was educated and licensed as a physician, working as a doctor in Campbell River, Lillooet and Dease Lake.

Riding: Vancouver-Quilchena.

Quote: "We will be putting forward a positive agenda that excites people and people will be able to look at it and say 'That is about me. That is what makes me tick as a British Columbian. That's the kind of thing I want to see implanted at the provincial level.'" — Wilkinson after Monday's election call.

Sonia Furstenau, leader of British Columbia's Green party:

Age: 50.

Family: She lives in the Cowichan Valley with her husband, Blaise, and their children.

Education: Has a bachelor of arts and a master's degree in history from the University of Victoria.

Career: Before entering politics, she worked as a waitress, a bookkeeper and as the national administrator for Results Canada, a non-profit that works to end extreme poverty. Furstenau also taught high school in Victoria and Shawnigan Lake. Her first involvement in politics came as an area director for the Cowichan Valley Regional District. She was first elected to the legislature in 2017.

Riding: Cowichan Valley.

Quote: "For three years, we have worked in good faith with this government to push for policies that will make our province stronger. The B.C. Greens have driven many of the significant gains, such as the Clean BC climate policy, banning big money, and early childhood education and child care. Right now, people are worried about their health and safety, the cost of living and the stability of our economy." — Furstenau in a statement after the election was called.

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