A beaming Raymond Cho could hardly contain himself.
“Of course I’m excited,” the councillor said upon learning of his re-election in Ward 42 on Oct. 25.
Cho won with 53 per cent of the vote, beating Neethan Shan, who finished second with 33 per cent.
“I will continue to work hard to make the community a safer and more beautiful place,” Cho shouted during his victory speech. “This means more programs for youth and seniors.”
Though some felt that candidates like Neethan Shan and George Singh would compete strongly against Cho, his victory didn’t come as much of a surprise to many voters and Ward 42 residents.
“I knew he was going to win,” said Norma Forrester, a longtime Cho supporter. “He has been supporting our church for a longtime and he’s very visible within the community. That’s why people will continue to vote for him.”
It may have been this visibility that caused many young people to vote this time around. After reports were released earlier this year that there has been a decrease in young voters, Cho’s office and team included many youth.
Christethanie Yu, 21, says she’s lived in his riding for almost her whole life and has seen Cho in action long before she was able to vote.
Before the results, Cho’s family and friends remained optimistic. Cho’s wife, Soon Cho, was confident that he would win by a landslide.
“He was a social worker before he became a politician, so his heart goes out to the community, they’re like our extended family,” she said.
Raymond was elected to Council for Scarborough-Malvern in 1991, and has been re-elected every election since. He is widely known for his community involvement and was chair of the board of directors for the Toronto Zoo for 2 consecutive terms.
About 100 residents of the ward and friends of the Cho family came out to support and celebrate with the longtime councillor, who will be celebrating 20 years in Ward 42 next spring.
“I feel very humble, not just for all the support but also for the fact that the community cares about me,” Cho said.