Cambridge MPP Kathryn McGarry becomes minister of natural resources and forestry

Local Cambridge MPP Kathryn McGarry has been named to Kathleen Wynne's Liberal cabinet, as minister of natural resources and forestry, while former minister of education and Guelph MPP Liz Sandals was re-assigned and is now president of the treasury board.
Kathryn McGarry was sworn in as minister of natural resources and forestry on June 13, 2016. (CBC)

Local Cambridge MPP Kathryn McGarry has been named to Kathleen Wynne's Liberal cabinet as minister of natural resources and forestry.

The former critical care nurse and first-time MPP was elected in June 2014 and named parliamentary assistant to the minister of transportation.

"It's an honour to be asked to join the premier's cabinet. As MPP for Cambridge, it's important to ensure Waterloo region's voice is heard at the cabinet table and I look forward to doing that as I serve as minister of natural resources and forestry," McGarry said in a news release Monday. 

Guelph MPP Liz Sandals, who has been minister of education since 2013, was moved off that portfolio. Sandals is now the president of the treasury board. 

Gender parity a priority

In announcing the shuffle, Wynne said women now hold 40 per cent of cabinet positions, though she had previously suggested reaching true gender parity in cabinet could be difficult given the makeup of the government she inherited.

The 12 female members of Wynne's 30-person executive council are:

  • Kathleen Wynne, premier and president of the council, minister of intergovernmental affairs

  • Deborah Drake Matthews, deputy premier, minister of advanced education and skills development, chair of cabinet, minister responsible for digital government

  • Elizabeth Sandals, president of the treasury board

  • Tracy MacCharles, minister responsible for women's issues, minister responsible for accessibility

  • Helena Jaczek, minister of community and social services

  • Mitzie Hunter, minister of education

  • Laura Albanese, minister of citizenship and immigration

  • Marie-France Lalonde, minister of government and consumer services, minister responsible for francophone affairs

  • Kathryn McGarry, minister of natural resources and forestry

  • Mary McMahon, minister of tourism, culture and sport

  • Indira Naidoo-Harris, associate minister of finance (Ontario Retirement Pension Plan)