Jane Sterk has been leader of the Green Party of British Columbia since October 21, 2007. The party won 8.10 percent of the vote in the election held on May 12, 2009, however, it did not win any seats. The party had candidates in all the province’s ridings.
It was the first election for Sterk as leader; she will continue in this position as the party builds towards the next election to be held in 2013. At the party’s annual general meeting held on May 23, 2009, the BC Greens affirmed their commitment to becoming a competitive political party. The party will continue to influence government policy and decision making with regard to pressing social and economic problems. The party also remains committed to providing alternatives to environmental problems, including climate change, peak-oil and over population.
Despite its 20-plus year history, BC’s Green Party has yet to win a seat in the provincial legislature. Adrienne Carr co-founded the party in 1983 and served twice as its leader. She announced her resignation in late 2006 to become Deputy Leader of the Green Party of Canada. Under Carr’s leadership, the Green Party earned 12 percent of the popular vote in the 2001 provincial election. However, the Party’s support base dropped to nine percent in the 2005 election.
Sterk sits on Esquimalt Council and on committees at the Board of the Capital Regional District (CRD). She also teaches Bachelor of Commerce and MBA courses in Business Environment at University Canada West. Her courses focus on the importance of businesses becoming more conscious of their social and environmental impacts and of changing their business practices so they are stakeholders in finding and implementing solutions to the climate crisis as well as community, social and environmental problems.
For 12 years Sterk was a retail business owner in the computer industry. Her first company grew to employ 60 people full time, while her second company, a small networking business, employed 10 people. During this time, Sterk also had a small private practice as a psychologist. She was formerly a psychologist with the Edmonton Board of Health. Sterk’s first career was that of a public school teacher.
Sterk was born on January 14, 1947 in Edmonton, Alberta. She earned a Bachelor of Education in Secondary School Social Studies in 1968, and a Master’s of Education in the Design of Instructional Materials, also at Secondary School Social Studies, in 1971. She went on to earn a Ph.D. in Counselling Psychology in 1982 from the University of Alberta. She married John Sterk on June 3, 1967. They have two children, Darryl and Lindsay, both of whom are married. Sterk also has a grandson named Sam.