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Maclean’s unveils list of 50 most powerful Canadians

Maclean’s magazine unveiled its list of the 50 most powerful Canadians on Thursday and it was no surprise that Prime Minister Stephen Harper topped the list.

But musician Drake (No. 43) and Toronto city planner Jennifer Keesmat (No. 41) also made the list, with Maclean’s calling Drake a better ambassador for Toronto than its scandal-plagued mayor Rob Ford. Keesmat, meanwhile, was lauded as an “advocate of density and walkability” – and as a “built-in counterbalance to Mayor Rob Ford’s preferences for driving and single-family homes.”

It was the first time Maclean’s went beyond Ottawa to include Canadians from all across the country on its annual list. The magazine said all 50 have the capacity to inspire Canadians and change the way we think and live.

They were chosen for the Power List “with three broad concepts in mind: institutional clout, capacity for innovation and timeliness,” Maclean’s Ottawa bureau chief John Geddes wrote in the magazine.

There were several other Toronto names on the list, like CBC host Jian Ghomeshi (No. 42); Andrew McCartney (No. 25), who spearheaded the McDonald’s “Our Food. Your Questions” campaign, and the CBC’s new executive vice-president of English-language services Heather Conway (No. 23).

And for those who disagree? Maclean’s “also claims there’s power in the ability to start an argument.”

Check out the Top 10 below and read the full list on newsstands, available on Thursday.

No. 1: Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada

No. 2: Naheed Nenshi, mayor of Calgary

No. 3: Jerry Dias, president of Unifor

No. 4: Mark Wiseman, president and CEO of the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board

No. 5: France Charbonneau, Superior Court judge

No. 6: Ray Novak, Stephen Harper’s chief of staff

No. 7: Galen Weston Jr., executive chairman of Loblaws

No. 8: Justin Trudeau, leader of the Liberal Party of Canada

No. 9: Julie Dickson, superintendent of the office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions

No. 10: Mike Lazaridis, co-founder of Blackberry

Rogers Media is the parent company of Maclean’s, City, CityNews and CityNews.ca.