Ex-premier of British Columbia Michael Harcourt, traced his political roots from lawyer to city councillor (four terms, 1972-1980), to Vancouver mayor (three terms, 1980-1986), and to East Vancouver MLA and eventually Premier in his autobiography Mike Harcourt: A Measure of Defiance (D&M 1996), co-written with Wayne Skene. Born in Edmonton on January 6, 1943, he was raised in Vancouver and studied law at UBC. He became B.C.'s second NDP premier in November of 1991 and stepped down as leader in February of 1996, in response to a charity bingo scandal in Nanaimo not of his own making. In semi-retirement, he was severely injured after a near-fatal fall off the deck of his Pender Island cottage on November 30, 2002, but he rallied to make a remarkable recovery. In 2003, as a self-described "recovering politician", he was appointed Federal Commissioner on the British Columbia Treaty Commission and also chair of the federal External Advisory Committee on Cities and Communities. He also became actively involved in spinal cord research and education. "After the accident, I became much more committed to the issues of the disabled in a way that I would never have imagined when I was going through Plan A." His memoir of his return to active life, Plan B: One Man's Journey from Tragedy to Triumph (Wiley, 2004), was co-written with John Lekich. Harcourt also co-wrote City Making in Paradise (D&M 2007).

[BCBW 2007] "Politics" "Health"

Review of the author's work by BC Studies:
A Measure of Defiance