Peter Bevan-Baker has officially stepped into the role of leader of the P.E.I. Green Party.
Bevan-Baker was acclaimed leader during the party’s leadership convention Saturday at The Guild.
As her final duty as the party’s interim leader, Darcie Lanthier presented Bevan-Baker with an invitation from the legislative assembly to the opening of the upcoming fall sitting of legislature.
In an address to the approximate 50 party supporters at the acclamation, Bevan-Baker said that he feels P.E.I. is entering a new era of politics and away from the traditional two-party system.
“I’m extremely excited and passionate about this opportunity that lies before us, to have make some really substantive profound changes to Prince Edward Island,” said Bevan-Baker. “It’s an enormous opportunity that we have here and it’s my responsibility to make sure that we go forth.”
The convention saw a number of panelists present Saturday morning, engaging in discussions over issues such as better protection of Island watersheds and sustainable land use planning.
A dentist by profession, Bevan-Baker is also a musician and environmentalist who has been associated with the Green Party for over 20 years, running as a candidate both federally and provincially. His first election in 1993 resulted in him receiving one of the highest vote counts of any Green Party candidate in the country.
Bevan-Baker said he intends to run in district 17 Kelly’s Cross-Cumberland in the 2015 provincial election. The district’s current MLA is Liberal cabinet minister Valerie Docherty.
Bevan-Baker previously ran in the district during the 2011 provincial election and received 306 votes, the most of any Green Party candidate during the election.
Bevan-baker said he believes many Islanders feel the current Liberal government is no longer representative of them.
“Our province has become over the last little while the victim I believe of mismanagement and a complete lack of vision,” he said. “Because in a place as singularly beautiful and resourceful as Prince Edward Island, we should be the envy of the rest of the country. But sadly that's not the case, we have poisoned our landscape and we’re known as a perpetual have-not province that has mishandled programs such as the PNP.”
Bevan-Baker said during the next three years he’ll be laying out a future vision for P.E.I. and collecting thoughts and ideas from others of how the province “can be made a better place.”
The convention was highlighted by a keynote address from Federal Green Party Leader Elizabeth May on Friday.