Hazel McCallion (Mayor/Politician)
Hazel McCallion has won 12 consecutive municipal elections to remain the Mayor of Mississauga, Ontario, (Canada’s sixth largest city), for the past 36 years, outlasting a total of eight Canadian Prime Ministers.
That in itself is amazing. Even more so is the fact that Hazel just celebrates her 93rd birthday as I update this in 2014, and is still going strong.
She won her last mayoral election in 2010 with a solid majority (76 per cent of the votes), and has won other terms without having to conduct an election campaign.
According to a somewhat dated, yet nevertheless excellent story in the National Post, McCallion (nee Journeaux) was:
Born Feb. 14, 1921, in Port Daniel, a farm and fishing town on Quebec's Gaspe Peninsula, (and) was the youngest of five kids.
As a child, she picked up her business acumen working in the little grocery shop her father, Herbert, ran for the fishermen whose catches fed his fish processing plant.
The article recounts how she turned on and tuned in an auditorium full of teenagers with talk of a trip to India, before going on to highlight her strengths and accomplishments of which there is an astonishingly long list.
On top of her business acumen and popularity, “Hurricane Hazel,” as she is affectionately known, played women’s professional hockey in her youth. She STILL skates when she has the chance (check out the PINK hockey jersey in the video below).
McCallion, who’s husband died in 1997, says she does all her own shopping, cooking, cleaning and gardening because it keeps her energized. She also loves to spend time with her two sons, her daughter and granddaughter.
One thing is sure, she knows how to balance a budget – not only is the City of Mississauga debt free, it has a surplus in the bank! Maybe the IMF and the international banking industry could learn a thing or two from her.
McCallion is both a Member of the Order of Canada, and a Member of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. Reports say that she wished she would have had the opportunity to get a university education, but her family couldn’t afford it.