Randy Thorsteinson was elected Leader of the Alberta Alliance
on Feb. 15, 2003 at the Founding Assembly of the Party. This
was the culmination of the vision that Randy had as the founder
of the Alberta Alliance.
His vision was to create a right of centre political alternative
to the Progressive Conservatives who have grown stale in governing
Alberta since 1971. Randy felt that a positive, solution oriented
alternative focused on advancing the principles of freedom,
limited government and the dignity and worth of every individual
was desperately needed in Alberta.
To understand Randy you need to understand his political past.
Randy was the President of the Reform Party of Canada
Red Deer Constituency from its inception in 1988 until 1991.
During this time the constituency grew from its infancy to
the strongest constituency association in Canada.
Following the 1988 Federal Election it was apparent to Randy
that in order to change Ottawa there had to be a change in
Edmonton. He tried to start the Reform Party of Alberta but
the federal party wanted to focus all of the Reform movements
efforts on federal politics.
Searching for a provincial home he came across Social Credit,
the former governing party in Alberta from 1935 1971
that was led for 25 years by Ernest Manning, father of Reform
Party founder and Leader Preston Manning. Realizing that the
basic foundation of Reform Party principles were based upon
the best that Social Credit had to offer, in 1991 Randy joined
Social Credit and entered the world of provincial politics.
He dedicated himself to building the Party that was down to
a handful of members and a smattering of support. He became
Social Credit President in a short three months and Leader
one year later. He worked diligently to bring new people into
the Party and grew the Party to a solid showing in the 1997
election by having 70 candidates garner almost 65,000 votes,
finishing second in many constituencies. A highlight was his
performance in the provincially televised Leaders Debate
where his performance won him accolades throughout the province.
By early 1999 polling showed that over 150,000 Albertans supported
Social Credit and a breakthrough of seven to eight elected
members was already likely.
However, Randy resigned from Social Credit in April 1999 in
protest of an internal party proposal to limit the involvement
of a specific religious group within the Party. Randy believes
in the equality and dignity of all people and could not in
good conscience be a part of an organization that would foster
intolerance in any form.
In 2001 and early 2002 Randy worked as the Central Alberta
campaign organizer for Stephen Harpers Leadership bid
for the Canadian Alliance. Following Stephens successful
election as Leader, Randy returned to what he thought was
political retirement. However, his three years on the sidelines
could not dampen his love for Alberta or his frustration with
the governing Progressive Conservatives. He decided to provide
Albertans with a principled alternative and formed the Alberta
Alliance Party. To register a new party in Alberta is a tremendous
amount of work and in September 2002 Randy presented over
8,000 signatures (5,750 were required) on a petition to register
the Party. In October 2002 the Party was officially registered
with the Founding Assembly being held in Red Deer on Feb.
14 & 15, 2003. In two short days the Party ratified a
constitution, policies, elected a Provincial Council and Randy
was elected Leader.
Randy attended Ricks College (now Brigham Young University
Idaho) in Rexburg, Idaho from September 1976
December 1977. He then attended Brigham Young University in
Provo, Utah from January 1978 until April 1980.
He majored in Business Management.
Randy is a founder and Chief Operating Officer of Cascadia
Motivation Inc. a 20 year old firm based in Red Deer, Alberta
with offices in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. The history
of Cascadia Motivation is a true Alberta entrepreneurial success
story. Founded in March 1984 at the height of the Alberta
recession with $2,000 and one folding chair, the growth of
the company is a lesson of the value of grit, determination
and hard work.
Cascadia Motivation Inc. is a leading Performance Improvement
company in Canada, providing motivational, incentive, and
loyalty marketing programs to sales forces, dealer networks
and channel partners. They also provide the key motivational
element to service and safety programs for individuals and
Randy has served as the Canadian President and on the World
Board of Directors for the Society of Incentives and Travel
Executives. The Society of Incentive & Travel Executives
is a worldwide organization of business professionals dedicated
to the recognition and development of motivational and performance
improvement strategies of which travel is a key component.
It recognizes the global cultural differences and practices
in developing these strategies, and serves as a networking
and educational opportunity for its members.
He is also a member of the International Society for Performance
Improvement. Founded in 1962, the International Society for
Performance Improvement (ISPI) is the leading international
association dedicated to improving productivity and performance
in the workplace. ISPI represents more than 10,000 international
and chapter members throughout the United States, Canada,
and 40 other countries.
Randy has been very active over the years. He has served as
a Scout Leader; a Youth Group Leader; a coach in youth hockey,
football and basketball; and has held many leadership positions
within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to
which he converted in 1976.
Randy is married to the former Kathleen Kelly and they have
eight children; six daughters Kerstin, Lauren, Megan,
Saren, Ashley and Caitlyn; and two sons Andrew and
Thomas. Being considerably outnumbered Randy and the boys
have grown to appreciate a womens point of view.