Photo: Jeff Watson (left) speaks at a rally in support of Ontario PC candidate Chris Lewis (right) on May 11, 2018. (Source: Facebook)
Watson served as the Conservative Party MP for southern Ontario district of Essex from 2004 until 2015 when he was unseated by New Democrat Tracey Ramsey. He had previously run in Windsor-West as a Reform Party candidate in 1997 and a Canadian Alliance candidate in 2000.
While in Ottawa he served as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport.
The Windsor Star reported in November 2016 that Watson was planning to relocate himself and his family to Calgary to pursue new opportunities.
His LinkedIn page describes him as the Proprietor of Issachar Strategies with his clients listed as “Jason Kenney Leadership, Alberta Advantage Fund, the Hon. Andrew Scheer, We R Conservative.” His Facebook page does not name specific organizations but states that some of his clients are “independent schools and parent groups fighting the NDP for school choice and to preserve parental authority.”
Watson worked as Director of Outreach and Coalitions in Kenney’s leadership campaign.
Watson travelled back to Ontario during the first week of that province’s recent election and spoke at a rally organized for Progressive Conservative candidate Chris Lewis in the provincial Essex district on May 11, 2018.
Elections Alberta lists Watson as being the President of the Calgary-Hays UCP association since 2017 and as having served as president of the PC association in the same district in 2017.
Calgary-Peigan is a new district that is created mostly from areas currently included in Calgary-Fort as well as Calgary-Acadia, Calgary-Hays, Calgary-South East. Current Calgary-Fort MLA Joe Ceci will run for the NDP in the newly redrawn Calgary-Buffalo district.
The other candidates running for the UCP nomination in this district are Tanya Fir, Andrew Griffin, and two-time Wildrose Party candidate Jeevan Mangat.
If you know any candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for party nominations, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will add them to the list. Thank you!