Muslim mayor of Calgary, Canada gains attention for his vision of the city

News Agencies – February 10, 2011

While the Toronto-based DiverseCity project critiques the lack of ethnic and religious diversity in Canadian politics, Canada’s first Muslim mayor, Naheed Nenshi, has received a great deal of attention because of his urban vision of the city. Born in Toronto, raised in Calgary, Nenshi is the son of Ismaili Muslim immigrants from Tanzania. Much has been made of this, but in fact what sets him apart and makes him important is what he says, especially about cities. Nenshi has connected with Calgarians who desire a more urban city, not endless sprawl. His talk about civic engagement and “politics in full sentences” resonated with an electorate tired of the usual left/right squabbling.