The Liberal Party of Newfoundland and Labrador has announced that Humber Valley MHA Dwight Ball has been chosen by the party's executive board to serve as its next leader.
According to a news release issued by the party, the executive board met Wednesday evening to accept the resignation of Kevin Aylward, who led the party to win six seats in the fall election, and to select Ball as the new leader.
Party president Judy Morrow said the board's decision was unanimous.
"Mr. Ball is a tremendously successful businessman and active community volunteer who brings a wealth of knowledge, business acumen and leadership experience to the job," she said in the news release. "I look forward to working with him in the future as we continue to grow and renew the party and offer an alternative to the current government."
Ball will assume his duties as the Leader of the Official Opposition on Jan. 3, 2012.
Ball won his seat for the second time in the October general election, having first been elected in a byelection vote in 2007.
He lost the seat later that year to Progressive Conservative candidate Darryl Kelly. Ball went on to defeat Kelly in this year's election in a tight race, winning by less than 100 votes.
Born and raised in Deer Lake, Ball has owned a pharmacy and a senior's complex in the community. He is a former president of the Canadian Pharmacists Association and the Deer Lake Chamber of Commerce. Ball has also served on the board of directors for the Deer Lake Airport Authority.