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This profile was last updated on 1/11/15  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.

Mr. Greg Essensa

Wrong Greg Essensa?

Chief Electoral Officer

Phone: (416) ***-****  
Elections Ontario
51 Rolark Drive
Toronto , Ontario M1R 3B1

Company Description: Elections Ontario is a non-partisan Agency of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. We work under the direction of the Chief Electoral Officer, an officer of the...   more

Employment History

  • Framework
    Elections Ontario
  • Chief Elections Officer
    Elections Ontario
  • Chief Electoral Officer
  • Director of Elections and Registry Services
    City of Toronto
  • Arm's-Length Officer
  • Ontario’s Chief Electoral Officer


  • economics
    McGill University
191 Total References
Web References
Elections Ontario Report on Telephone and Internet Voting is A Slap in the Face to Voters with Disabilities – Elections Ontario Refuses to Now Use Its Authority To Test Telephone and/or Internet Voting in By-Elections, Despite Their Use in 59 Municipaliti, 1 June 2013 [cached]
's unelected and unaccountable Chief Electoral Officer, Greg Essensa. We are troubled that Mr. Essensa shows no real interest in acting boldly and expeditiously to lift that ban.
In a two-part, 271-page report to the legislature tabled Monday, chief electoral officer Greg Essensa said it's time to embrace technological changes in order to encourage more people to vote.
"Voter participation in the electoral process is declining. In the 2011 general election, for the first time, voter participation dropped below 50 per cent, setting a record low for voter turnout in Ontario," wrote Essensa.
"We need to identify and remove barriers in our processes and procedures that may discourage people from voting."
Essensa said his weighty study, "Alternative Voting Technologies Report," will serve as "the framework that we will employ as we move forward on our principled approach to innovation."
But there are security and technological challenges to online or telephone voting, he concluded after looking at experiences in Australia, Estonia, the U.S., Britain and various Canadian municipalities.
There is "the need for a two-step authentication process, given the lack of a government-issued ID card or digital authentication certificate."
Essensa said for a pilot project in a by-election, which would cost about $1.75 million, voters could use a driver's licence as identification.
"While verifying a user's identity using this form of identification is the best means currently available, it has a direct impact on voters who cannot obtain a driver's licence," he wrote.
Despite the need for change, Essensa noted that the city of Edmonton's examination of online voting found there is "no conclusive evidence that shows introducing Internet voting will have a positive impact on turnout ... Internet voting will not fix the problem of voter turnout decline completely."
And now that Ontario's chief electoral officer, Greg Essensa, has tabled a 271-page report recommending the embrace of technology, it's clear that the modernization of voting is long overdue. A radical concept, this is not.
If Ontarians can safely execute online banking transactions or health card renewals, then surely the act of voting must also catch up with the times. The Ontario government should move quickly to implement the online voting recommended by Essensa.
But as the Star's Robert Benzie reports, Essensa believes that decline can be reversed to some extent through the ease of online voting.
"We need to identify and remove barriers in our processes and procedures that may discourage people from voting," Essensa wrote. He's right. Anyone who has raced through gridlock to stand in a stuffy school auditorium for the pleasure of exercising their democratic right behind a cardboard voting station would agree.
The current system, the report says, is "no longer sustainable. It notes increasing difficulties in the recruiting and training of the 70,000 people needed to work on election day, since fewer are willing or able to do the job.
Still, no one, including Essensa, expects online voting will create a dramatic spike in participation rates.
AODA - Our Campaign for Strong, Effective Implementation of the AODA [cached]
Download and listen to an MP3 file of Chief Elections Officer Greg Essensa's March 24, 2010 Presentation on Bill 231 to the Standing Committee on the Legislative Assembly First Day of Public Hearings Show Resounding Support for our Call for Bill 231 to be Strengthened to Ensure Fully Accessible Elections for Ontarians with Disabilities
Chief Electoral Officer Greg ..., 18 Feb 2015 [cached]
Chief Electoral Officer Greg Essensa has made repeated calls for stricter rules around third-party advertising after discovering that political spending by these groups tripled to $9 million - more than the 19 registered political parties combined and three times more than spent in 2007. Essensa also called the current process "completely non-transparent."
"Mr. Essensa is an officer of this Legislature and the Premier as all members of the House should be mindful of his advice and recommendations," he says.
Walker says in his conversation with Essensa, the elections chief made it clear that capping third-party advertising was one of his top three priorities.
AODA - Second Day of Second Reading Debates on Bill 231, the proposed Elections Proposed Elections Reform Legislation, held on March 2, 2010, 2 Mar 2010 [cached]
I'd also like to thank our new Chief Electoral Officer, Greg Essensa. He's an officer of this House. This upcoming general election will be his first. He has overseen three or four by-elections-
Greg Essensa, I think, is just a real champion of fair and efficiently run elections, and we are very glad to have him.
One of them was that Greg Essensa, the new elections officer for the province of Ontario, is an arm's-length officer of the Legislature.
Greg Essensa, ..., 24 Mar 2014 [cached]
Greg Essensa, Past-President
Greg Essensa was appointed Ontario’s Chief Electoral Officer with the unanimous consent of the Legislature in June 2008. He is the seventh person to hold the position.
Mr.Essensa has over 25 years of municipal, provincial and international election experience. He began his career as a student worker in the former City of Toronto’s election warehouse. Over the years, he took on positions of increasing scope and responsibility and prior to his appointment he served as the Director of Elections and Registry Services for the City of Toronto.
A dedicated election official, governments of all levels, associations and not-for-profit organizations have sought his election administration expertise. He has advised on municipal elections in British Columbia, Alberta, Quebec and New Brunswick and primary elections in Illinois, North Carolina, Ohio and Texas.
Born and raised in Toronto, Mr. Essensa studied economics at McGill University.
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