Memorable Manitobans: Eugene Michael Kostyra (1947-2020)
Union official, MLA (1982-1986), MLA (1986-1988).
Born at Winnipeg on 19 June 1947, son of Albert Bernard Kostyra (1910-1999) and Jean Elizabeth Swetz (c1916-1992), he attended Ralph Brown School, Isaac Newton School, and St. John’s High School, dropping out of the latter to work as a clerk-typist and journeyman electrician. He became involved in trade unions which led to his involvement in provincial politics.
Elected at the 1981 general election, he served in the portfolios of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (1981-1982), Culture, Heritage, and Recreation (1981-1986), Urban Affairs (1981-1983), Manitoba Housing and Renewal Corporation (1981-1982), Industry, Trade, and Technology (1983-1986), Manitoba Development Corporation (1983-1987), and Manitoba Lotteries Foundation (1985-1986). He was re-elected in 1986 and was Finance Minister (1986-1988) but the defeat of his budget in 1988 led to the fall of the Howard Pawley government. He lost his own seat in the subsequent 1988 general election. He remained active in union business, serving as a regional director for the Canadian Union of Public Employees (Manitoba). In 1999, he was appointed to head the Community and Economic Development Committee of Cabinet. In recognition of his community service, he was inducted into the Order of Manitoba (2011).
He died at Gimli on 3 May 2020.
Birth registration [Albert Bernard Kostyra], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Birth announcement, Winnipeg Tribune, 23 June 1947, page 16.
Obituary [Jean Elizabeth Kostyra], Winnipeg Free Press, 7 June 1992, page 26.
Obituary [Albert Bernard Kostyra], Winnipeg Free Press, 10 August 1999, page 32.
“Former NDP titan and Manitoba finance minister Eugene Kostyra dies,” CBC News, 4 May 2020.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 9 May 2020.
MLA Biographies - Deceased, The Legislative Assembly of Manitoba.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 23 May 2023