City councillor and TTC Chair Josh Colle has announced that he will not seek reelection in the fall and will instead take a job in the private sector that will allow him to spend more time with his family.

The Ward 15 Eglinton-Lawrence councillor was flanked by his three sons and Mayor John Tory as he made the announcement at city hall on Wednesday morning.

“This is a wonderful and exciting job – I think sometimes my kids think it is cool – but sometimes it does a take a toll on your family so it is time for me to spend a little more time with them and be around a little more,” he said. “These guys are growing up fast and while my move back to the private sector will still be busy and challenging it will allow me to be at a few more hockey games and school events and just generally be there for them.”

Colle, the son of longtime Liberal MPP Mike Colle, was first elected to city council in 2010 after previously working as the vice president of an energy and infrastructure firm and holding a number of other jobs in the financial services sector.

He had previously registered for reelection in Ward 15 on June 26 but he said that he deliberated over his future over the last few weeks and ultimately decided to step aside from public life ahead of Friday’s deadline to withdraw as a candidate.

The announcement of his departure comes two weeks after the TTC board voted to appoint Ricky Leary as the organization’s next CEO, following a hiring process that Colle was closely involved with.

“I am so proud and really confident in the future of the TTC because of the work we have done. I said as soon as I got the role that we needed to do a return to the sort of nuts and bolts of transit and I think we did that. Certainly we reinforced our efforts to improve customer service, we have put so much new transit on the roads and really focused on things like subway pumps and tracks and stuff that is not sexy but needed to be done,” he said. “II think the TTC is in great shape, I know Rick Leary is the right person for the job and I know that the mayor and council will continue to support transit and invest in transit.”

Colle has served as TTC chair for the duration of this term of council, a period of time that saw the completion of the Line 1 subway extension to Vaughan and the continued rollout of Presto

He has also dealt with his share of challenges, including a myriad of delays in the delivery of the city’s new fleet of streetcars and the launch of a $50 million legal claim against Bombardier due to those delays.

Speaking with reporters on Wednesday, Tory said that Colle has worked to “reassert the importance of public transit in Toronto” and has “spearheaded the drive to have a network transit plan for the City of Toronto” while always working in a “collegial manner.”

Tory said that it his hope that Colle does return to the political realm one day, a possibility that Colle himself didn’t dismiss.

“I fully expect and I also hope that we have not seen the last of you in public life,” Tory said. “That I presume may depend on a poll taken within your family but I hope the answer is yes and that you are back at one point or another serving the public.”

The municipal election is scheduled for Oct. 22.

Oleksandr Bomshteyn is the only other candidate registered to run in Colle’s ward ahead of Friday’s registration deadline.