In Memory of our dear friend Ian Reid.
The Douglas Coldwell Layton Foundation for Social Democracy is proud to have been chosen by Ian's dearest friends and family to be the home for a scholarship in his memory. Please make a charitable contribution to this scholarship fund in memory of Ian Reid.
The Ian Reid Scholarship will be awarded annually to students committed to working in politics to promote the values and goals of social democracy. It is intended specifically for those pursuing careers in opinion research, strategy and communications. The scholarship recognizes the role of 2SLGBTQ+ people in the social democratic movement. And it seeks to encourage greater racial, cultural, economic and gender inclusion around the decision-making table – to create public policy that better meets the needs and aspirations of everyone. This scholarship will help support the next generation of thought leaders.
Ian Reid spent his political career supporting and advising social democratic leaders and the New Democratic party. Ian believed in the necessity of political work and the potential of social democracy as a force for good. He believed that listening and learning from people was the starting point in making positive change. He was a passionate advocate for using research as an instrument to do that and to develop messages that speak to people’s hearts and minds. His goal was to elect progressive governments and put in place policies that make a difference in people’s lives.
For many years, Ian was the Head of Opinion Research for the NDP government in British Columbia. In that role and others, he was one of Canada’s most brilliant research experts. He was able to cut through the noise, identify trends, and draw insights from what he heard. He made research useable for campaigners, communicators, and policy-makers – so that we could better connect with our audiences,
speak to their aspirations, shape policy and meet their needs.
As a political researcher, Ian was also a pioneer. He humanized the demographic groupings in polling. Long before it became a standard practice, he had campaigns put names and faces to people within those groupings, discuss the daily challenges those diverse individuals face, to strengthen our understanding of where they’re coming from and what they’re looking for.
Ian continued his work through 12 years of a terminal illness, serving at the end of his career as Carole James’ Chief of Staff. He died in 2014 at age 58. His three children – Jordan, Shamus, and Alexis – carry forward his work in politics, advocacy and government.
To learn more about Ian please click here.