Meet the B.C. Green party’s ne­go­ti­at­ing team

The Province - - NEWS - — Rob Shaw

The B.C. Green party has a new four-per­son team to ne­go­ti­ate pos­si­ble sup­port for ei­ther a Lib­eral or NDP pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment. Liz Lilly Chief of Staff

A vet­eran bu­reau­crat, Lilly served as the Green party’s elec­tion plat­form di­rec­tor. Af­ter the elec­tion, she was named An­drew Weaver’s chief of staff. She spent 30 years as a pol­icy ad­viser and econ­o­mist, start­ing as a ju­nior econ­o­mist in the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment of Mar­garet Thatcher, be­fore mov­ing to Al­berta. She then worked for the B.C. gov­ern­ment for 25 years, serv­ing un­der So­cial Credit, NDP and Lib­eral ad­min­is­tra­tions in var­i­ous port­fo­lios and also in the au­di­tor gen­eral’s of­fice, be­fore re­tir­ing as di­rec­tor of B.C.’s Cli­mate Ac­tion Sec­re­tariat.

Nor­man Spec­tor Con­sul­tant to the ne­go­ti­at­ing team

A for­mer po­lit­i­cal in­sider, Spec­tor has decades of ex­pe­ri­ence in fed­eral and pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ments. He was deputy min­is­ter to B.C. Pre­mier Bill Ben­nett in the 1980s, and chief of staff to then prime min­is­ter Brian Mul­roney from 1990 to 1992. He then served as Canada’s am­bas­sador to Is­rael, vice-pres­i­dent of Im­pe­rial To­bacco and pub­lisher of The Jerusalem Post.

Now re­tired in Vic­to­ria, Spec­tor is an ac­tive po­lit­i­cal com­men­ta­tor. He has, at times, courted con­tro­versy, such as in 2006 when he called then MP Belinda Stronach a “bitch” on a Vancouver ra­dio sta­tion and re­fused to apol­o­gize.

Many con­sider him more al­lied with the B.C. Lib­er­als than the B.C. NDP, though Spec­tor in­sists he has never been a mem­ber of a po­lit­i­cal party. Weaver said the Greens need his ex­pe­ri­ence.

“He’s not driv­ing the po­lit­i­cal agenda, he’s pro­vid­ing strate­gic po­lit­i­cal ad­vice,” Weaver said.

An­drew Weaver Leader, B.C. Green party and chief ne­go­tia­tor

Weaver be­came the Green Party’s first MLA in 2013. A for­mer cli­mate sci­en­tist at the Univer­sity of Vic­to­ria, he’s twice led ne­go­ti­a­tions in fac­ulty bar­gain­ing at the school. Weaver had pre­vi­ously said he wouldn’t take a di­rect role in ne­go­ti­a­tions, but on Wed­nes­day none­the­less ap­pointed him­self chief ne­go­tia­tor for the talks.

So­nia Furste­nau Deputy leader, B.C. Green Party

Furste­nau is a for­mer re­gional di­rec­tor from the Cowichan Val­ley, who led a grass­roots fight against a con­tam­i­nated-soil dump­ing fa­cil­ity in Shawni­gan Lake on Vancouver Is­land. As the Green can­di­date in the elec­tion, she helped Weaver win a key rid­ing in what had once been an NDP strong­hold


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