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  • Jan Harder is an Ottawa City Councillor representing the ward of Barrhaven. She is the appointed chair of the Ottawa Public Library board, which sets policy and has the ultimate say in decisions affecting the library system. Born in Ottawa, she spent her youth in a number of different Ontario cities. Trained as a radiological technician, she eventually became an executive in the grocery business. She first entered politics in 1997 when she was elected to Nepean city council. With the creation of the new amalgamated city of Ottawa in 2000, Harder ran against regional councillor Molly McGoldrick-Larsen. While the race was expected to be close, Harder ended up winning by several thousand votes. She was reelected in the 2003 Ottawa election, by defeating newcomer John R. Palmer. One of her first efforts on city council was the successful campaign to replace the new coat of arms with that of the old city of Ottawa. She also led a campaign to have filters installed on computers in the public libraries that would keep users from accessing pornography. In the November 2006 municipal elections, Harder retained her position as councillor with 75% of the vote in Barrhaven Ward.

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