The Saskatchewan Party and the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party have announced the trio of candidates seeking election for the province’s three vacant seats.
The Regina Walsh Acres, Regina Coronation Park, and Lumsden-Morse ridings have all been left vacant.
Regina Coronation Park was left vacant after Mark Doherty announced his resignation earlier this year.
Doherty had held the position since 2011, winning two re-elections in 2016 and 2020.
Riaz Ahmad was announced as the candidate for the Sask. Party.
“It is an honour of a lifetime,” he said. “I look forward to working with the great people of Coronation Park as their candidate, and hopefully next MLA.”
Born in Pakistan, Ahmad immigrated to Regina in 2013. Before coming to Canada, he studied Accounting Management at the Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of Pakistan.
He works with his brother at their family-owned pest control business and lives with his wife and four children in Coronation Park.
For the Sask. NDP, Noor Burki, will seek election for the second time in the riding.
“It is my honour to represent the NDP in this by-election,” said Burki. “As a business owner, educator and father, my dedication is to ensuring the brightest future possible for my children, your children, and everyone in Saskatchewan.”
Burki is a small business owner, a driving instructor, and a father to seven daughters. He lives in Regina with his wife, Shamim. He owns Wascana Driving School and serves as a driving instructor to students within the Regina Public School system.
The by-election for the seat must be called by August 10.
The Lumsden-Morse seat was left up for grabs after Lyle Stewart stepped down for health reasons.
Stewart had held the Lumsden-Morse seat, formally the Thunder Creek, since 1999 before announcing his resignation on March 10.
Blaine McLeod will look to continue the Sask. Party’s winning ways as he received the party’s nomination.
“I look forward to hitting the road this summer to meet with constituents across our riding. As an MLA, I would continue that good work and ensure that Lumsden-Morse continues to have a strong voice at the table.
McLeod has been a dairy farmer in Caronport for 42 years, where he operates Caroncrest Farms Ltd. with his sons. He currently serves as the Saskatchewan Director of Dairy Farmers of Canada.
McLeod and his wife Marlie have lived in the hamlet of Caron since 1975. They have three children and ten grandchildren.
Kaitlyn Stadnyk will represent the Sask. NDP in the riding.
“I am so thankful for the support of the members here in Lumsden-Morse,” said Stadnyk. “We need to work collaboratively with our small towns and communities to bring back local voices so that we can build a brighter future for everyone in Saskatchewan. The opportunity to build right here at home is high. What we need now is a government that is ready to deliver on the promise of Saskatchewan.”
Stadnyk grew up on the family farm near Lumsden and is completing a Bachelor of Human Justice at the University of Regina. She is also actively involved within her community, having worked with numerous non-profits, including the John Howard Society.
Regina Walsh Acres was left vacant after the traffic passing of MLA Derek Meyers on March 29.
Between Warren Steinley and Meyers, the Sask. Party has held the seat since 2021.
Looking to continue there hold, the Sask. Party voted for Nevin Markwart to run in the riding.
“I am very grateful and excited for the opportunity to serve the community I grew up in,” Markwart said. “I look forward to meeting with the great people of Regina Walsh Acres on their doorsteps this summer and will be working hard to earn their vote.”
Growing up in Regina, Markwart played in the WHL with the Regina Pats. In 1983, he was drafted by the Boston Bruins and played for 9-years in the NHL.
After retiring from hockey, Markwart went on to earn an MBA in Finance in 1994 and worked in the global investments management industry for over 25 years. In 2019, he completed a Master of Science degree in Cybersecurity.
Markwart is the Chief Information Security Officer with FutureVault, a cloud-based document management company. He lives in Regina with his partner Erin.
For the Sask. NDP Jared Clark, a Regina Public School Division teacher, will seek election.
“I am so honoured to have earned the support of the many residents of Walsh Acres that came out tonight. I intend to immediately get to work earning the votes of the people of Walsh Acres,” said Clarke. “The time is now to listen to educators and parents about the state of our schools. Saskatchewan was once a nation leader in education, health care, and the economy, and together we can do that again.”
As a biologist actively volunteering in the community, he has also served as a Friends of Wascana Marsh board member and as a field trip coordinator for Nature Regina.
Clarke is a husband and a father to 11-year-old twins.
The by-election for the seat must be called by September 28.
No date has been announced for any of the three by-elections, however Premier Scott Moe said earlier this year that lumping all three of the elections together “would make the most sense from an Election Saskatchewan perspective.”