Notable Leader

Alvin Curling


Alvin Curling

Dr. Alvin Curling was first elected to the Ontario Legislature in 1985, winning the Scarborough North constituency (now Scarborough Rouge-River). Dr. Curling was appointed Minister of Housing that year, thus becoming the first Caribbean-Canadian to hold a Cabinet-level position in Ontario. He was easily re-elected in 1987 and was appointed to the vital role of Minister of Skills Development in September 1987.

Then, in 2003, Dr. Curling was elected Speaker of the Ontario legislature without opposition becoming the first Caribbean-Canadian Speaker of the Legislature in Ontario’s history. He went on to serve as a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for 21 consecutive years, making him the most enduring Caribbean-Canadian to serve at any level of government in Canada.

Throughout his career as an MLA, Dr. Curling dedicated his time in office as an advocate for minority voices by championing the high principles of inclusiveness, public service, and human rights and by addressing the preservation of democracy, which he describes as the central doctrine of his political career. Through this continuing commitment, he thus stands as one of the most respected figures in Canadian politics.

In 2005, Dr. Curling was asked by the federal government to serve as Canada’s Ambassador to the Dominican Republic where he played such an integral part in facilitating the free trade negotiations between Canada and the Dominican Republic. Between 2007 and 2010, he was selected to serve as a Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. In addition to this, Dr. Curling was appointed co-chair to the Premier’s Task Force in 2006, along with former Chief Justice of Ontario Roy McMurtry, on the Commission to Review of the Roots of Youth Violence.

Dr. Curling was also honoured by the government of his country of birth, Jamaica, with the Order of Distinction in the rank of Commander in 2001. In 2014 he was a Member of The Order of Ontario.

Source: The Toronto District School Board.