Don Davies gives his victory speech, while his campaign team, wife and daughter stand behind him. – photo Todd Wong
the past two years, I have seen Don Davies mature from a shy potential
candidate when I first met him at one of Meena Wong's dim sum lunches.
Don has become a more assertive – yet still humble and hardworking
victorious winner. Genuinely concerned about others, he is a
thoughtful quiet man with the heart of a lion.
nobody in that room more surprised than me,” Don shared with me after
his victory party, when I drove him back to his car at the house where
he had been watching the early election returns.
“When I first took on the nomination, people told told me it wasn't winnable – but I believed with hard work, it could happen.”
hard work is the essence of this humble working man's politician. Over
the past two years, Don built his community presence and his campaign
team. He put the right people in the right places, such as his campaign manager Joe Barrett
(son of former BC Premier Dave Barrett), and he worked very hard to be
informed on the issues and to learn the issues in the different
communities. Don is a lawyer who works on human rights and protecting
workers' rights as Director of Legal Resources for Teamsters Canada
There really was a strong Chinese-Scottish element to Don Davies'
campaign. Don's wife Sheryl Palm is of Scottish ancestry and she loved wearing her tartan and attending this year's Gung Haggis Fat Choy dinner.
Don's key campaign advisors was Meena Wong, a Beijing-born
Chinese-Canadian who speaks Cantonese, Mandarin and even a little
French. While living in Toronto, Meena had also been an assistant to
Toronto city councilor Olivia Chow, now re-elected MP for
Trinity-Spadina, and of course the wife of NDP leader Jack Layton.
In his victory speech, Don gave especially big thanks to Meena Wong, whom he called
“incredible.” Meena really helped get Don's message out to the Chinese
language community, attending Chinese-Canadian community events and
even got Don working to help new immigrants with their family
citizenship and immigration applications. Even while making a bid to
secure a COPE nomination for Vancouver City council, Meena was always
taking Don to events in the Chinese-Canadian community.
Meena told me that after phoning up new immigrants and offering them rides to vote, “They thanked me so much to be encouraged and valued and to participate in this very democratic process.”
Lots of people showed up tonight to congratulate Don Davies at his Victory Party held at Heritage Hall on Main St.:
Former BC Premier Glen Clark, Don Davies and Meena Wong – photo Todd Wong
CUPE sandwich! Todd Wong (CUPE 391 executive member-at-large) with Dr. Kerry Jang (Vision Vancouver councilor candidate), and Paul Faoro (CUPE 15 President). – photo Todd Wong
Anital Romaniuk (COPE Parksboard candidate), Am Johal, Sheryl Palm, Michael Byers (NDP MP candidate Vancouver Centre), Ellen Woordsworth (COPE city council candidate) – photo Todd Wong
See pictures by Patrick Tam / Flunging Pictures