Kate White poses for a photo at the legislative assembly building in Whitehorse on April 23, 2019. White was acclaimed as leader of the Yukon NDP. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Kate White to be the new leader of the Yukon NDP

White will be formally endorsed by party membership at a convention in Whitehorse on May 4.

The Yukon NDP will soon have a new leader.

Longtime Yukon NDP MLA Kate White, who has represented the Takhini Kopper-King riding since 2011, was acclaimed as leader on April 19, the party announced in a press release April 23.

She will be formally endorsed by party members as leader on May 4 at a convention at the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre, taking over from Liz Hanson.

Hanson announced that she was stepping down as leader — a role she’s held for a decade — in November 2018. White ran uncontested for the position, something, she told the News in an April 23 interview, she had not been expecting.

“I was hopeful that someone else would be putting their name forward,” she said.

As incoming leader, White said she wants to bring a “new energy” to the party, bringing a bit of her “own personality into the process” while building on the Yukon NDP’s existing values and ongoing work.

“I want to bring the invitation to people who don’t see themselves in politics that this is the party that represents them, this is the party that shares their views and, you know, their kind of problem-solving,” she said.

The press release said that White’s priorities will also include “growing the Yukon NDP in preparation for the next territorial election, with an emphasis on making the Yukon a more affordable, inclusive and sustainable place for all Yukoners.”

“Acclaimed or not,” she added, “I worked hard in the last number of months to raise the profile of the party, that I’m going to continue doing things … the way that I have, which is by inviting people to participate, by welcoming them in.

“I look forward to the future.”

Contact Jackie Hong at jackie.hong@yukon-news.com

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