Darrell Dexter : biography
Darrell Dexter (born September 10, 1957), Canadaeast.com, April 12, 2010 is a Canadian lawyer, journalist and former naval officer who is serving as the 27th and current Premier of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, since 2009. A member of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party, he has led the party since 2001. He became Premier in 2009 after his party defeated the governing Progressive Conservative Party. He is the first NDP premier in Atlantic Canada.
Dexter holds degrees in education and law from Dalhousie University,, "The Sunday Herald", October 25, 2009 and a degree in journalism from the University of King’s College., Metro, May 7, 2010 He used his journalism degree for a period as a reporter for The Daily News in the early 1980s. Dexter also served in the Canadian Forces holding the rank of Sub-Lieutenant and was a Command Information Officer on board and while deployed with Maritime Forces Pacific.
Dexter was a practicing lawyer before he entered public life. He was first elected as a Dartmouth City Councilor, serving from 1994 to 1996., The Daily News, October 16, 1994
A former Chair and member Board of the Dartmouth Downtown Development Corporation,, The Daily News, November 30, 1993 Dexter was also once a member of the Dartmouth General Hospital Commission, Chair of the Dartmouth Common Committee,, The Daily News, March 30, 1995 a former member of the Board of Directors of the Victorian Order of Nurses (Dartmouth Branch), and a member of the Community Planning Association., The Daily News, August 16, 1997
Dexter is married to Kelly Wilson and together they have one son, Harris.
2009 election campaign
In Dexter’s third provincial campaign in 2009, the NDP campaign led in many polls and was on target to win a minority government. The NDP looked to hold its support in the Metro Halifax area, and make gains on the South Shore and rural mainland Nova Scotia.
Dexter campaigned on a document called Better Deal 2009 which came with 50 promises to be completed over 4 years, and focused on 7 key commitments of creating new jobs, helping to keep emergency rooms open, taking the HST off of home electricity, fixing rural roads, helping seniors, giving young people a reason to stay in the province, and more renewable energy.
On June 9, 2009, Dexter was elected the first NDP premier of Nova Scotia with a majority of the seats in the Nova Scotia legislature.
They held their support in Halifax and Cape Breton, and expanded their base on the South Shore, Pictou and suburban Halifax. The NDP won in the Annapolis Valley and Central Nova Scotia for the first time, winning the seats of Kings North, Kings South, Truro-Bible Hill, Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley and Cumberland North.
Dexter became the 8th leader of the Nova Scotia NDP in June 2001 when he took over as interim leader after Helen MacDonald stepped down. He ran for leadership against John MacDonell in 2002 and won with 63% of the vote.
Member of the Legislative Assembly
Dexter was elected to the Nova Scotia Legislature as MLA for Dartmouth-Cole Harbour in 1998 and served as critic for Economic Development and Health. He was re-elected in 1999,, The Daily News, July 28, 1999 2003,, "The Chronicle Herald", August 6, 2003 2006, "CBC News", June 13, 2006 and 2009.. "CBC News", June 12, 2009.
2003 election campaign
In Dexter’s first provincial campaign in 2003, the NDP campaign trailed in third place in many polls and was in danger of losing seats. The NDP looked to consolidate its strong support in the Metro Halifax area, and make gains in the conservative rural mainland and Cape Breton.
Dexter campaigned to form Crown Corporation for car insurance to lower premiums by 50%, paying for health coverage in nursing homes, reducing waiting lists for surgeries and diagnostic tests, removing the provincial portion of the HST on home heating oil, increase classroom resources for public schools, freezing tuition fees for Nova Scotia universities for a year while introducing a student debt relief plan, and maintaining balanced budgets.