MP Nathan Cullen has been named Parliamentarian of the Year in Maclean’s magazine annual parliamentarian awards.
The NDP Member of Parliament was nominated by other MPs across party lines, receiving the top title at an awards gala in Ottawa on Nov. 5.
It was an honour to be nominated (& a shock to actually be named) Parliamentarian of the Year by fellow MPs.
I’ve always tried to take the wise advice of my wife, Diana, to try my best to ‘translate’ the sometimes confusing world of Canadian politics. https://t.co/k9rqtGHASb
— Nathan Cullen (@nathancullen) November 6, 2018
In Parliament, the five-term MP is known as a vocal advocate on a range of issues, including environmental protection, clean energy, First Nations rights and the increasement of trade through Prince Rupert’s port, according to Maclean’s.
Cullen has worked in small businesses and non-profits before politics and told the magazine that he still sees his job through that lens.
“I just thought of this whole gig as, what if you had a non-profit that had stable funding, a really good platform from which to speak and engagement with government at this level?” he says in the magazine’s article. “I thought, any non-profit would take that deal, that’s a great set-up.”
In 2014, Cullen introduced Bill C-628, An Act to Defend the Pacific Northwest, to protect B.C.’s coastline from oil supertanker spills and improve community consultation on energy projects. He also fought off pipeline proposals, such as the Enbridge’s Northern Gateway project.
Before being named to Parliamentarian of the Year, Cullen was twice voted as the best orator and once as the most knowledgeable.
He told Maclean’s that for him, there are different ways of being an MP and that he thinks of the job as a soundboard where people can tweak their settings in categories like partisanship, constituency work and legislative prowess.