MISSISSAUGA: Feb 14 – whwas celebrated in Mississauga as Hazel McCallion Day (the former mayor turned 100 on that day) as per the Hazel McCallion Day Act which states:
“Hazel McCallion served in public office continuously from 1968 until her retirement in 2014. She was first elected mayor of Streetsville in 1970 and then as a councillor in Mississauga and in the newly created Region of Peel in 1974.
Following two terms as a councillor, she was elected mayor of Mississauga in the 1978 municipal election. During her historic thirty-six years in that office she oversaw the incredible growth and urban transformation of Mississauga from a city of 280,850 residents
in 1978 to Canada’s sixth-largest city in 2011, with more than 713,000 residents. Her tenure as Mississauga’s mayor is the longest in the city’s history and she has received numerous awards and honours for her lifetime of contributions to her community.
“Though retired from politics, she remains an active champion of major Mississauga-based projects, including the University of Toronto (Mississauga) and Sheridan College. Her years of service to her community have been recognized through the dedication of public facilities in her honour, such as the Hazel McCallion Campus (Sheridan College), the Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre (University of Toronto Mississauga), the Hazel McCallion Senior Public School in Streetsville and the Hazel McCallion Centre for Heart Health (Trillium Health Centre). She has been an active fundraiser for local and international charities.
“McCallion’s achievements are notable for their number and scale, as well as the social atmosphere in which she began her career. Though women had been elected mayor of other Canadian cities previous to McCallion, political life was nonetheless widely regarded during the 1960s – when she entered politics – to be a man’s domain.
Her participation in public life since that time makes her a brilliant example to women and, indeed, all Ontarians. As our province strives to eliminate gender-based discrimination, her professional life and numerous contributions are reflective of the leadership role that women can, and should, be entitled to seek in a fair and just society.”
This centennial celebration of McCallion, and her legacy as Mississauga’s longest-serving Mayor, also included video greetings from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other public figures.
The Mississauga Arts Council (MAC) produced a tribute video, hosted by Mayor Bonnie Crombie, to mark Hazel’s 100th birthday. The video includes more than a dozen singing and dancing performances as well as testimonials from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Premier Doug Ford, Senator Victor Oh, Toronto Mayor John Tory, former Prime Minster Jean Chrétien, Japanese Consulate-General in Toronto Sasayama Takuya, Rick Mercer and other public figures.
Mississauga’s Civic Centre Clock Tower was lit up in red and pink on February 14 in recognition of Hazel McCallion Day and Mississauga’s Central Library was renamed as the Hazel McCallion Library.