Aidan Johnson is a long-time West Hamilton community activist. He is known for his commitment to civic engagement and his passion for making Hamilton a better place to live, work, and play. A hard-working lawyer with deep roots in West Hamilton, Aidan has extensive knowledge of the issues that matter. He is a proven leader, dedicated to building stronger neighbourhoods for everyone.
The son of two Hamilton teachers, Aidan grew up in Westdale and attended George R. Allan, Dalewood and Westdale Secondary schools. Aidan emerged as a highly-respected leader at a young age, working with his peers and local officials to raise awareness of social justice issues and speak up for vulnerable members of the community. His efforts to combat stigma made a significant impact on Hamilton school board policies to ensure safety for LGBTQI students. In 2003, Maclean’s magazine recognized Aidan as a “Young Canadian Leader to Watch For” in its annual listing.
At age 16, Aidan began writing for the opinion pages of The Hamilton Spectator as a member of the Community Editorial Board. This led to a long involvement with the paper’s op-ed pages. For the past 18 years, his Spectator articles have driven local debate on a range of issues — from safer neighbourhoods to economic prosperity and jobs. Aidan’s articles on law, politics, and culture have also appeared in The Globe and Mail, The National Post, and The Toronto Star.
Aidan’s extensive track record of volunteer work includes roles as an HIV-AIDS outreach worker, fundraiser for PEN Canada and two years as President of a West Hamilton riding association. He is a member of Ward One’s Participatory Budget Advisory Committee and an active supporter of Cootes Paradise conservation efforts.
Aidan lives in the Kirkendall neighbourhood with his partner Stefan, an ecologist and farmer. Aidan and Stefan were married in 2013. They are the proud uncles of Ava and Lily, two young Ward One residents who inspire Aidan’s commitment to making Ward One an even better place to grow up. Aidan’s infectious laughter and compassion for others are qualities cherished by his family and friends.
A barrister and solicitor by training, Aidan was a lawyer employed by Legal Aid in Hamilton. He previously worked in corporate law at the national firm Borden Ladner Gervais (BLG) LLP) and in Aboriginal Law with Ontario’s Ministry of the Attorney General. Aidan studied at the McGill University Faculty of Law. He was a Fulbright scholar at New York University (NYU) and a graduate student at the University of Chicago. He is fluent in both English and French.
Aidan was elected Ward 1 Councillor for the City of Hamilton in October 2014.