Karen McCrimmon speaking at a community discussion night, 28 January 2014
|Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness|
|Assumed office |
August 31, 2018
|Preceded by||Mark Holland|
|Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport|
January 30, 2017 – August 31, 2018
|Preceded by||Kate Young|
|Succeeded by||Terry Beech|
|Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence|
December 2, 2015 – January 27, 2017
|Preceded by||Pierre Lemieux|
|Succeeded by||Sherry Romanado|
|Member of the Canadian Parliament|
|Assumed office |
October 19, 2015
|Preceded by||New riding|
|Born||1957 (age 61–62)|
Weston, Ontario, Canada
|Alma mater||University of Windsor (B.A.)|
Canadian Forces (retired)
|Branch/service||Royal Canadian Air Force|
|Years of service||1980–2006|
|Commands||429 Transport Squadron|
|Awards||Order of Military Merit (1995) |
Canadian Forces Decoration with clasp
Karen McCrimmon OMM CD MP (born c. 1957) is a Canadian Forces veteran, mediator, and politician who was elected Member of Parliament for Kanata—Carleton in the 2015 Canadian federal election. After a 31-year military career, McCrimmon retired as a lieutenant colonel. She was the first female navigator and the first woman to command a Canadian Forces air force squadron. She became involved in federal politics with the Liberal Party of Canada in 2008. In 2011, she was the Liberal candidate for the federal election in the Carleton—Mississippi Mills riding and, in 2013, she unsuccessfully bid for the Liberal leadership.
McCrimmon was born in Weston, Ontario. Her father, Charles Martin, was a metallurgic technician employed by the A.V.Roe Company working on the AVRO Arrow CF-105. Her mother, Isabel, emigrated from Scotland on her own, at the age of 20. When the Arrow project was cancelled in 1959, her father found work with Trans-Canada Airlines and moved his family to Timmins, Ontario. In 1971, the family moved to Windsor, Ontario.
While in high school, McCrimmon joined the Royal Canadian Army Cadets. In 1975, she joined The Windsor Regiment (RCAC) as a Reservist. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Windsor in Russian and linguistics, and originally wanted to work in Canada's diplomatic corps.
McCrimmon then joined the Regular Force in 1980, and became an air navigator, the first female to gain such a qualification.
In 1995, she was made a member of the Order of Military Merit and, in 1998, was promoted lieutenant-colonel and given command of 429 Transport Squadron, becoming the first woman to command a Canadian Forces flying squadron. In 2000, she headed the Transport and Rescue Standardization and Evaluation Team. In July 2006, she was posted to Ramstein, Germany to serve as a Senior Staff Officer at the NATO Air Headquarters. She did a tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2004 where she was responsible for NATO Airlift Co-ordination. She retired from the Forces in 2006.
McCrimmon became involved in federal politics with the Liberal Party in 2008. She was the Liberal candidate for the riding of Carleton—Mississippi Mills in the 2011 federal election, but lost to the Conservative incumbent Gordon O'Connor. In December 2012, she announced her bid for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada and, on April 14, 2013, she conceded to the winner Justin Trudeau.
In the 2015 Canadian federal election, McCrimmon was the Liberal candidate in Kanata—Carleton, essentially the Ottawa portion of Carleton—Mississippi Mills. She defeated Conservative candidate Walter Pamic by a 7,600-vote margin as the Liberals swept to a majority government. After the election, she was touted as a candidate for a cabinet portfolio.
On November 13, 2015, McCrimmon was sworn in as the Member of Parliament for the riding of Kanata – Carleton. Prior to her election, she was a consultant for private and public institutions and organizations.
Married to Rob McCrimmon since 1985, the couple have two grown children. Karen McCrimmon is a private pilot and is a member of the Women's Executive Network (WXN), CFUW, FMWC, Royal Canadian Legion, and CWIA.
Honours and decorations
McCrimmon received the following honours and decorations during her military career.
|Order of Military Merit (OMM)||
|Gulf and Kuwait Medal||
|General Campaign Star||
|Special Service Medal|
|Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal|
|Canadian Forces Decoration (CD)||
|2019 Canadian federal election|
|New Democratic||Melissa Coenradd||8,001||12.38||+5.57|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||64,613||100.0|
|Total rejected ballots|
|Source: Elections Canada|
|2015 Canadian federal election: Kanata—Carleton|
|New Democratic||John Hansen||4,313||6.81||-8.48||–|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||63,323||100||$212,958.74|
|Total rejected ballots||191||–||–|
|Liberal notional gain from Conservative||Swing||+19.64|
|Source: Elections Canada|
|2011 Canadian federal election: Carleton—Mississippi Mills|
|New Democratic||Erin Peters||11,223||14.62||+4.98||–|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||76,773||100.00||–|
|Total rejected ballots||196||0.25||–|
- Duffy, Andrew (Apr 3, 2011). "Its Army versus air Force,". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved December 27, 2012.
- Egan, Kelly and Darren Major (20 October 2015). "McCrimmon soars to huge Liberal victory in Kanata-Carleton". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
- Ottawa Citizen (Apr 14, 2011). "Liberal Party: Karen McCrimmon". Postmedia. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
- Dunn, Derek (November 13, 2012). "Riding woman joins Liberal leadership race". Ottawa East News. Retrieved October 6, 2015.
- "McCrimmon makes list of Liberal leadership candidates". West Carleton Review. December 13, 2012. Retrieved October 6, 2015.
- "Federal Liberal leadership race". Canada. CBC news. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
- Crawford, Alison (20 October 2015). "What might a Liberal cabinet look like?". CBC News. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
- Smith, Teresa (November 12, 2012). "Retired Forces Lt.-Col. McCrimmon to launch federal Liberal leadership campaign". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved December 21, 2012.
- "Private pilot and volunteer for the Canadian Cancer Society". Retrieved January 9, 2013.
- "List of confirmed candidates". Elections Canada. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
- Elections Canada – Confirmed candidates for Kanata—Carleton, 30 September 2015
- Elections Canada – Preliminary Election Expenses Limits for Candidates Archived 2015-08-15 at the Wayback Machine