Bonnie Crombie wins Mississauga mayoral election
As Hazel McCallion departs, Bonnie Crombie is elected mayor of Mississauga.
BERNARD WEIL / TORONTO STAR Order this photo
Outgoing Mayor Hazel McCallion came to congratulate Bonnie Crombie on her win at the Pope John Paul II Polish Cultural Centre.
By: Nicholas Keung Immigration reporter, Published on Mon Oct 27 2014
As one matriarch departed, a new one was crowned in Mississauga on Monday.
Bonnie Crombie rode her momentum in the final stretch of a closely contested race to replace the beloved Hazel McCallion and begin a new era for Canada’s sixth-largest city.
The race was touted by many as the one to watch in Greater Toronto and Mississauga’s first real mayoral race in 36 years. under McCallion, who always won in landslides, decided to retire at age 93.
“I ask that you please join me in recognizing Mayor Hazel McCallion and thank her for all that she has done for our city,” said Crombie, flanked by her Polish immigrant mother, Veronica Sawarna, husband Brian, and their children, Alex, Jonathan and Natasha, on stage at her victory party at Mississauga’s Polish cultural centre.
“You have my commitment that we’re going to honour her legacy and continue to build a great city…We have an opportunity to rewrite, reinvigorate. We have limitless potential and together, I know we will achieve greatness.”
Knowing she’d have huge shoes to fill, Crombie, 54, a one-term Mississauga city councillor and former Liberal MP, vowed to create her own legacy by investing in the city’s infrastructure and stimulating economic growth through “smart-growth” principles.
Crombie said both she and Mississauga owed a lot to McCallion.
“Hazel MaCallion has taken our city from farm fields and fruit trees to the sixth largest city in Canada and an economic powerhouse in North American,” Crombie told more than 500 supporters.
“For many, she has been the only mayor they have ever known and her story is truly the stuff of legends. She has been a mentor to me and I am proud to call her a friend. I cannot thank her enough for her support.”
She also paid tribute to her arch rival.
“I want to thank my opponent, Steve Mahoney, for his contribution to this campaign and to the debate we have had in this city,” she said.
“Although the campaign was heated at times, Steve was always a gentleman and did not allow our campaign to become personal.”
While Crombie’s victory wasn’t exactly an upset against seasoned politician Steve Mahoney, she had lagged behind him in polls until an endorsement by McCallion boosted her campaign in mid-October.