alberta liberals hire new brunswick resident as new executive director.

The Alberta Liberals quietly announced on their website this week that New Brunswick-based writer and consultant Gerald McEachern would take over as the party’s executive director on September 4. Following the Liberal Party’s disastrous showing in the May April 2012 election, the position had been filled on a temporary basis by strategist and former candidate Alex Macdonald. Before to the election, the executive director role was filled by Corey Hogan.

Here is an exert from the Liberal Party website:

After an extensive national search that saw more than 20 people apply for the position, Van Vliet said he’s confident that Gerald has the experience, the skills and the enthusiasm to lead the Party organization forward as we all support Raj Sherman’s four-year plan to win the hearts and minds of Albertans.

Gerald comes to us via Northern Ontario and lately from New Brunswick. His career is both rich and varied: he has been a strategic consultant, a business developer for towns, businesses and NGOs and the owner of a marketing and communications firm.

He has been an active Liberal for many years, both in New Brunswick and in Ontario. Gerald has also been a dedicated volunteer board member for several social, historical and arts organizations.

Mr. McEachern is a regular contributor to The Huffington Post Canada and also maintains his own blog. His online biography lists him as living in St. Andrews by-the-Sea in New Brunswick.

Led by Raj Sherman, the Liberal Party elected only 5 MLAs in the 2012 election and lost official opposition status for the first time since the 1993 election.

23 thoughts on “alberta liberals hire new brunswick resident as new executive director.

  1. Corey Hogan

    Hi Dave,

    While I was the Campaign Chair for 2012, I stopped serving as Executive Director of the Alberta Liberal Party in September of 2011.

    That role was filled in an interim basis by the Operations Manager from October 2011 until their resignation in April of 2012.

    Reply
  2. daveberta Post author

    Thanks, FW. The great Liberal myth that because they didn’t lose all their seats in 2012 that it was a successful campaign. Dropping from 26% support in 2008 to 10% in 2012 was pretty disastrous for the Alberta Liberal Party, as it would be for any party.

    Reply
  3. Fixed Wing Goose

    Only getting 38% of their vote percent, 50% of their vote, and 55% of their seats isn’t a passing grade, but given how many people were expecting a wipe out (so many of them supporters of the Alberta Party, a party that WAS wiped out) it’s hilarious to see the subtle spin of snarky adjectives.

    Say what you will Dave, but don’t assume you say it in a vacuum that your previous comments or biases can’t enter.

    I don’t know if you see yourself as a journalist, a pundit or what but your weird blend of feigning neutral post-partisan observer status and thumb-on-the-scale linguistic choices looks disingenuous.

    And tell yourself I’m just some liberal supporter if you want. But your tone should make it hard for supporters of any party to take you seriously.

    Reply
  4. daveberta Post author

    Thanks, FWG. I’ve always been open about biases and have never pretended to be neutral about my support, both past and present, of any political party or candidate.

    The Alberta Party went from nearly nowhere to absolute nowhere in the last election. The Liberals went from 19 years as Official Opposition to distant third place. When you take scale of magnitude into account, it’s pretty clear to me who faired more poorly.

    You?

    Reply
  5. Corey Hogan

    No worries, I was the last permanent Executive Director and am happy to have served in that role.

    At the risk of sounding like I agree with a crank, I don’t think the 2012 election was a disaster – though as the chair of said election effort you can take that statement with a grain of salt.

    I do think the years leading up to the election were what I will euphemistically call challenging. The party, however, has five MLAs, four years, and more enthusiasm than it has in recent past.

    The percent Raj got in his leadership review speaks to that enthusiasm and what I believe is a general satisfaction with the direction the party has taken under him. With a strong base and a clear direction, the Liberals will be just fine.

    Good luck to Gerald in his new endeavour, and good on the ALP executive for doing a nationwide search. It speaks to their seriousness and professionalism in their important work of offering a credible progressive alternative to a long-serving government.

    Reply
  6. Unimpressed

    Horse junk, Daveberta. The Alberta Party failed to get a single MLA elected and never will manage to accomplish even that. If you actually want a progressive government in Alberta, you’d pitch in and help the ALP. As it is now, your party isn’t a force of nature, it’s a footnote.

    Reply
  7. Fixed Wing Goose

    I like almost anybody else in the world would rather make the podium than not be invited to the Olympics.

    Reply
  8. daveberta Post author

    Thanks for the comment, Corey.

    I do agree with most of your comment. The years of internal leadership difficulties and changes in the Liberal Party from 2008 to 2011 hobbled that party’s ability to prepare for and organize a province-wide campaign.

    The rise of the Wildrose Alliance significantly put the Liberals at a disadvantage. In many ways, Danielle Smith became the leader of the unofficial opposition from the time she won her party’s leadership until she was elected as an MLA in 2012.

    By the time the election rolled around, the Liberals had already been usurped from their traditional position as the default opposition party to the PCs. There was really no way to change that in the short time that Dr. Sherman had before the election.

    Dr. Sherman now has four years to figure out where exactly his party fits in this new political environment (I’m not sure exactly where that is).

    Dave

    Reply
  9. Wade Izzard

    Dave;

    The Wildrose party polled better than any other opposition party against the P.C.’s since they first formed government in 1971. Even with that fact Smith only got 17 seats.

    The ALP had more than 30 against Klein in 1993.

    Pointing out that the ALP was a distant 3rd is a bit harsh. The ALP managed to get re-elected every M.L.A that ran and had a seat after the writ dropped. Something even the P.C & Wildrose parties did not do.

    Although the N.D.P. did do that and increase percent of seats after the writ by 100%. Saddly they are still the 4th party in the house. Right where they were before the writ dropped.

    But in Alberta it is the same old story. A vote for the N.D.P. equals one for the Tory.

    The ALP has the time, the talent and focus to make gains in the next election. The membership was wise not to toss Dr. Sherman under he bus after the last election.

    Dr. Taft, Dr. Swann, & Dr. Sherman plus the efforts of Mr. Hogan & many many others kept the party alive moving forward to fight the next election.

    Others Dave such as yourself left for the NDP or the Alberta Party. The NDP & Alberta Party spent so much energy only to end up at the same place at the finish line where they started before the writ.

    There is nothing wrong with fighting the good fight like the ALP did and loosing. The voters always get it right.

    Reply
  10. Wade Izzard

    Dave;

    The Wildrose party polled better than any other opposition party against the P.C.’s since they first formed government in 1971. Even with that fact Smith only got 17 seats.

    The ALP had more than 30 against Klein in 1993.

    Pointing out that the ALP was a distant 3rd is a bit harsh. The ALP managed to get re-elected every M.L.A that ran and had a seat after the writ dropped. Something even the P.C & Wildrose parties did not do.

    Although the N.D.P. did do that and increase percent of seats after the writ by 100%. Saddly they are still the 4th party in the house. Right where they were before the writ dropped.

    But in Alberta it is the same old story. A vote for the N.D.P. equals one for the Tory.

    The ALP has the time, the talent and focus to make gains in the next election. The membership was wise not to toss Dr. Sherman under he bus after the last election.

    Dr. Taft, Dr. Swann, & Dr. Sherman plus the efforts of Mr. Hogan & many many others kept the party alive moving forward to fight the next election.

    Others Dave such as yourself left for the NDP or the Alberta Party. The NDP & Alberta Party spent so much energy only to end up at the same place at the finish line where they started before the writ.

    There is nothing wrong with fighting the good fight like the ALP did and loosing.

    Reply
  11. Will Munsey

    I wish the new Exec. Director of the ALP good luck. I also wish to point out that while we did not get any seats and were disappointed, the Alberta Party got 16,960 more votes than in the previous election. Laugh at that if you must… there are still some of us who don’t think it’s right to give up after one setback.

    Will
    Alberta Party
    VP Policy

    Reply
  12. Fixed Wing Goose

    Yes Will,

    But if you look at the average number of votes per rising contested: with 17,000 votes across 38 candidates the Alberta Party had its second worst showing in any election it’s contested since 1993.

    So as far as silver linings go, that’s not great.

    Maybe all of the parties to the left of the PCs ought to try something new.

    Reply
  13. Matt Grant

    Re @daveberta, “Dr. Sherman now has four years to figure out where exactly his party fits in this new political environment (I’m not sure exactly where that is).”

    I think Kent Hehr, for one, has done a good job carving out some territory for the ALP.

    For example, here he argues persuasively that we need to look at income tax increases to maintain our current level of spending for services if we’re not going to waste resource as fast as it comes in: http://www.calgaryherald.com/opinion/columnists/Albertans+must+higher+taxes+fair+future+generations/7123965/story.html.

    He’s also called for the creation of a new resource framework that would see Albertans take an ownership percentage of major development projects through a newly recreated Alberta Energy Company: http://www.albertaliberalcaucus.com/index.php/site/News_story/nexen_purchase_raises_resource_ownership_questions_says_hehr.

    Reply
  14. Julia Necheff

    Wade Izzard –
    Re your comment “There is nothing wrong with fighting the good fight like the ALP did and losing. The voters always get it right.”

    I respect ALP’s progressive values and give the party top marks for perseverance. But with the voters “getting it right” for so many decades and refusing to elect an ALP govt, maybe it’s time for Alta Liberals to do some serious soul-searching.

    I, too, am a progressive who believes in fighting the good fight – but for me, the future lies with the moderate Alberta Party.

    Reply
  15. Wade Izzard

    Julia Necheff-

    Election night was tough. The P.C party lost 8 percent of its vote. The ALP lost 16 percent. From the last election. People did not want to see Smith win.

    The voters got it right to vote for a more progessive party, than the Wildrose. I do not agree with that choice, but I understand it. It really sucks.

    Other parties (like the NDP & and Alberta Party)would have had no problem to step over the corpse of the ALP to be the new progressive op in the house. NONE of the progressive parties including the government increased its seats or its share of the vote (very scary).

    More scary would have been a Wildrose victory.

    The culture of the ALP is what needs to change. They have four years if they can do that. The government may be changed too.

    If the P.C governement runs too far to the right ( and I think they will) then change will come if we earn the vote. With smart & hard work and great policy.

    No other party in the last 40 years has come as close to defeating the P.C party than the ALP.

    The Wildrose party might do it if the progressive vote is spilt so many different ways.

    The ALP was able to have so much perseverance because it was able to keep some talented people like Corey Hogan & choose Dr. Sherman to lead when all hope seemed to be lost.

    I think the future is bright for the ALP and its new pool of talent. With Sherman, Van Villet and Gerald McEachern on the job.

    Reply
  16. Set the Record Straight

    ALL incumbent running MLA’s won their seats. The Liberals were greatly outfinanced, greatly under donated, and had very little help with regards to volunteers. The Liberal MLA’s that lost, while talented and intelligent people, are just that, NEW MLA’s running at a time, when most centrist progressive voters RAN yellow at the thought of “Lakes of Fire”. That single asinine blog comment blew off almost 50% of the Liberal Voters to fall on the sword and vote for Redford. Moderate Wildrosers did much the same, voted for Redford.

    So while some of you geniuses keep blaming the Liberals for being this and that, you ignore the greater picture of what went one. Some of you naysayers predicted 1 to 2 seats only for the Liberals. You were proven wrong.

    The culture of the ALP is in the process of transformation. The Alberta Party has officially become junk status. Sorry to Ms. Necheff, you are intelligent and a nice lady, but its time to wisen up and the same goes to the to the rest of the well meaning Alberta Party supporters, the show is over, and the audience is gone. The AP DID NOT win even one seat, NOT even close!

    The question is now, are AP supporters going to end this futile persuit? The AP leader has resigned and the one MLA has resigned.

    The possibilities of a true, energized, centrist rise in AB is very real, given that the right wing has become permanently fractured in AB. Alberta Party supporters and Liberal Supporters and even disenfranchised Tory supporters should not squander another opportunity to uproot the status quo.

    This last vote just showed us, if centrists keep themselves selfishly divided. They are to blame for the pseudo democracy we keep re-entrenching.

    Its time to move on folks and unite, bind and find common strengths. Set aside old notions, old hatred and find a way to pool your talents and bring a true centrist choice to fruitition.

    Reply
  17. Mike R

    So long as crazy Raj Sherman, bitter Laurie Blakeman and anti-potato activist David Swann are running the show I see no future for the Liberals in Alberta. I’m surprised the only reasonable one among them Kent Hehr is stickig around.

    Redford has her flaws but she represents everything the Liberals wish they could. I’m sticking with the PCs. At least they keep the even crazier Wildrose Reformers out of government.

    Reply
  18. @ Mike

    Stick with the Tories really? Just ask, where did all the money go? We got the worlds’ second largest energy reserve. We been mining the Oilsands for so long now. Oil prices @ 95$/bbl this high, and they still cant save anything. I am not for or against any particular ideology. You have no ground launching baseless and frivolous character attacks against anybody here. The question must be asked and contemplated by unthinking stalwart supporters like you….. Just saying……

    Reply
  19. Pingback: Alberta Liberals set to rebrand as Liberalberta. | daveberta.ca - Alberta politics

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