Longtime Vancouver Coun. Raymond Louie announces he won't seek re-election

The exodus of experienced municipal politicians in Metro Vancouver continues.

First elected in 2002, Louie is the 4th Vision Vancouver councillor to announce this year is his last

Vision Vancouver councillor Raymond Louie has served since 2002. (City of Vancouver)

The exodus of experienced municipal politicians in Metro Vancouver continues. 

Raymond Louie, who has been a Vancouver city councillor for 16 years, announced Wednesday he won't be seeking re-election in this October's civic elections. 

"He was one of the most conscientious, longest-serving and smartest city councillors I have ever come across," said fellow Vision Vancouver councillor Kerry Jang, who is also not seeking re-election. 

Louie was first elected with COPE in 2002, but left with then Mayor Larry Campbell and several others in 2005 to form Vision Vancouver. He received the most council votes for the party in three of the last four elections. 

"I can't remember how many events he went to," said Jang.

"Sometimes, he would go to three or four Chinatown dinners in the same night. He was just tireless. He just continued to work and he met people constantly, and people remembered him."

Louie also ran for Vision Vancouver's leadership in 2008 in a losing effort to Gregor Robertson and has served as vice-chair of the Metro Vancouver board for several years.

He is tied with Tim Stevenson for the title of longest serving Vancouver councillor, and his announcement came on the same day, Judy Villeneuve, the longest serving Surrey councillor, announced her departure

"Getting the Canada Line approved. Turning around the finances of Olympic Village. New Killarney Seniors Center. Metro Vancouver vice chair. FCM president. For 16 years, Raymond Louie has shaped the city, region, and the national urban agenda," tweeted Mayor Gregor Robertson's longtime chief of staff, Kevin Quinlan, in a statement. 

Only 1 Vision councillor running again

Louie's announcement means Heather Deal will be the only one of the five Vision Vancouver councillors to seek re-election. 

"It's very sad news for me. I knew it was possible, but when he confirmed it for me last night, I have to admit, I was very sad," said Deal, who has served on council since 2005. 

"I'm running again partly because I believe we do need institutional memory at the table. I'm really excited about the new faces and voices … but I also think you need some continuity and institutional memory there. And I love my job."

Vision Vancouver members will choose four others to run for council with Deal in early July. 

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About the Author

Justin McElroy

@j_mcelroy

Justin is a reporter for CBC Vancouver, covering political stories throughout British Columbia.

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