Dr. Raymond Cho was elected the MPP for Scarborough-Rouge River in a by-election held on September 1, 2016.
Raymond immigrated to Canada from the Republic of Korea in 1967. Despite having worked for the American Embassy in Korea, Raymond could not find a professional job after landing in Vancouver, BC. His first job in Canada was as a dishwasher then later a miner in B.C. Not long after, Raymond arrived in Toronto - the city he has called home ever since.
Raymond realized that in order to become a successful Canadian, he needed higher education. Having completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Korea, Raymond pursued and obtained his Master of Social Work, Master of Education, and eventually his Doctorate of Counseling Psychology from the University of Toronto.
Prior to becoming an elected official, Raymond worked as a Social Worker for the Catholic Children's Aid Society, as well as the Toronto District School Board and Scarborough Board of Education.
Raymond was first elected to Metropolitan Toronto Council in the ward of Scarborough- Malvern in 1991. He became the first and only Canadian politician of Korean descent in Canada. Since then, he has been re-elected eight consecutive times to serve as a Toronto City Councillor.
Throughout his political career, Raymond has been a member of various boards and standing committees. He is the Chair - Toronto Zoo Board of Management - Member, Economic Development Committee - Member, Scarborough Community Council - Member, Civic Appointments Committee - Member, Affordable Housing Committee - Member, Environmental Nominating Panel - Founder and Chair, Global Youth Leaders - Canadian National Exhibition Association, Municipal Section - Young Ambassadors Selection Committee for Learnx Foundation - Toronto Community Housing Corporation (TCHC) Board of Directors - Sheppard East Village BIA
Raymond is proud to represent Ward 42, Scarborough-Rouge River which includes some of the most multicultural and multi-faith communities in Toronto. His active involvement in and out of the community has resulted in Raymond becoming well respected by every ethnic, social and religious community due to his outstanding dedication and hard work. One could easily say that “Everyone loves Raymond!” His strong advocacy for the environment has led to initiatives such as annual tree plants in partnership with the Friends of the Rouge Watershed and the Rouge Valley Foundation which has resulted in thousands of trees being planted every year since first being elected. Raymond is also a strong advocate for youth and seniors. Raymond is also an active supporter of many seniors’ groups within Scarborough-Rouge River and around the City of Toronto.
Raymond has received many prestigious distinctions, including the Order of Korea, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, as well as the Outstanding Asian Award by the Canadian Multicultural Council.
Raymond and his wife, Soon Ok, have been living in Scarborough for the past 40 years, and they have three sons, Raymond Jr., Ronald, and William.
Some highlights of his work include:
- Through Scarborough Community Council, Raymond helped establishing new names of Parks, such as Birunthan Park, Shawn Blue Rose Park and Major Abbas Ali Park in our community
- Collecting non-perishable food items and fund raising for food banks
- He travelled to Philippines to help building houses for typhoon victims
- He also travelled to Jamaica three times to help orphans infected with HIV/AIDS in an orphanage & seniors staying at Golden Age Senior Home in their relief efforts
- Water Exploration Project (Water Wells and Hand Pumps) in THAR Dessert areas in Pakistan