Edward Yaghledjian’s appearance, education and business experience belie the “tree-hugger” image establishment parties like to tag in their depiction of environmentalists, Green Party members and their representatives.
Mr. Yaghledjian, who is Green Party of Ontario’s (GPO) candidate in the June 12 provincial elections, comes across businesslike. He also has a degree in Math and Finance from York University in Toronto and a certificate in Negotiations and Conflict management from Harvard University. He has spent many years as financial planner at a major insurance company.
Despite his busy schedule, he is very active in the Armenian Canadian community and has served two years as controller of the Canadian Armenian Business Council.
The Green Party of Ontario’s candidate says his concern for all peoples, societies, and his underlying moral characteristics and interests in the environment were instilled in him and nurtured from an early age. That ideology was the allure and the motive which made his parents settle in Canada in 1980, Mr. Yaghledjian said.
Keghart: What made you want to become a politician?
Edward Yaghledjian: We are all politicians. It’s the size of the arena you choose to engage in that is different.
Keghart: Do you have any experience in politics?
EY: I was a GPO candidate in the 2011 elections.
Keghart: Why did you pick the Green Party of Ontario as the party you wanted to represent?
EY: The GPO has a sound, logical platform with detailed analysis and mathematics to back up that logic. There is no special accounting here!
Keghart: How well do you think the GPO will do in this year’s elections compared to last?
EY: The GPO’s plan is financially beneficial for each citizen. A plan that is environmentally sound and removes liability. It allows growth in the local economy and it is cheaper for the province. This is where the GPO stands. These are the steps that should be taken. It is as simple as that and applies to all areas…especially in the areas of energy, education, and job growth.
I believe the GPO has the capacity to attain a seat at the big table. However, the challenge continues in reversing the terrible taste that has been left behind by the big parties. As you know, each time fewer people vote which translates to fewer people being satisfied.
Keghart: Are there many Armenians in the Scarboro Centre riding where you’re running?
EY: I believe 2% of the population is Armenian
Keghart: Are you getting support from Scarboro Centre Armenians or Toronto Armenian organizations?
EY: I have the full support of any and all people, organizations who afford me the time.
Keghart: How would you improve the imprint of Canadian Armenians in Toronto, Ontario, and Canadian politics?
EY: Armenians in the government will allow the Armenian constituents to rally behind a single entity. We are far too fragmented. An elected Armenian—even in image—will provide the very foundation behind which all organizations will gravitate towards, thus establishing our footprint, our message, our wants and desires to the greater Canadian public.