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Authority record

Bennett, W.A.C.

  • WB02
  • Person
  • September 6, 1900 - February 23, 1979

W.A.C. Bennett is the longest-serving premier in BC history. Born in New Brunswick in 1900, William Andrew Cecil Bennett began his BC career as a successful hardware merchant in Kelowna. First active in the provincial Conservative Party, he joined the Social Credit Party in 1951, and became its leader after a surprise election victory in 1952. During his 20 year term as premier, the province saw rapid economic growth and the ambitious expansion of highways, hydro dams, railways, ferry service and post-secondary institutions, SFU among them. After winning re-election 6 times in campaigns against the "godless socialists" of the CCF-NDP (his term), Bennett resigned his leadership a year after his party was defeated by the NDP in 1972. His son Bill Bennett assumed the leadership, and later become premier himself. Known as "Wacky" to his political foes, W.A. C. Bennett died February 6, 1979 in Kelowna.

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