After 11 years away from the Province of Ontario, I’m pretty proud to be back. In a small way, I feel like I’ve missed some of my home province’s best moments. Either way, there’s no question that Ontario generally, and Toronto in specific, has grown up a lot while I’ve been gone. Pushing 6 million people, ranking in the top 4 cities in North America in tech talent, and boasting an incredibly international and cosmopolitan population, this is a city with a buzz.
Despite these virtues, there’s so much work to be done, and that’s what I’m particularly excited to be a part of. This is a city that didn’t know what co-working was until about 20 minutes ago. It’s got two of the best pieces of urban transit infrastructure in the form of its two subway lines, and yet most of Bloor street has two-storey buildings lining it, with tons of potential to support Toronto’s continued growth. There’s so much upside.
But by far, I’m most excited about the fundamentals of this city, and my home country and province. To name a few:
- A population welcoming of immigrants and ‘others’
- A society that vehemently supports rule of law, and routinely ranks lowest globally on indexes of graft and corruption
- Home to educational institutions that are ranked among the best in the world
- Clean air, clean water, and a pretty consistent commitment to protect them
- Balanced respect of collective and individual rights
- A stable economy, currency, and trustworthy institutions stewarding both
- Free healthcare for all citizens
Canadians are philanthropes in the truest definition of the word. Such a disposition is exactly what generates the canvas of cities and communities which I am so excited to be apart of, and to help build. I know I’m late to the party, but can’t wait to jump in.