30 years in journalism, co-founder of the Rocky Mountain Outlook, print and broadcast experience dating
back to 1978 in Winnipeg and Edmonton
Two years of teaching with the Japan Exchange Teaching (JET) program in Toyama, Japan 1988-1990
Contract administrator Christmas Spirit Campaign 2008-2009 (I think)
Part-Time administration/operations manager with Canmore Folk Music Festival 2009-2015
Volunteer, community or committee/board experience:
Canmore Folk Festival 2009-present -- Hospitality Coordinator in charge of feeding volunteers, performers,
Community Food and Friends head cook 2012-present
Alberta Winter Games hospitality coordinator/lunches 2014
Canmore Highland Games -- 2009-2014
Canadian Rockies Public School Board trustee 1998-2001, 2010-present
Chair Canadian Rockies Public School Board 2012-present
Member of the first committee examining the feasibility of creating ArtsPlace
How long have you lived in the community:
Why are you running for public office:
I'm passionate about the vital need for a strong public education system -- the pathway to the middle class, regardless of what kind of birth lottery you did or didn't win. Children are blank sheets of paper -- every one of them deserves the same opportunities as those born into wealthy families or whose skills and supports are stronger than another's, regardless of race or skin colour. As a nation we need a highly-educated workforce, we need intelligent, critically-thinking adults to be our doctors, our nurses, our scientists, our professors and our teachers. That work begins the minute a five-year-old hits first day of kindergarten.
These kids move into a world of global competition, and we need to do everything in our power to give them the best tools we can.
What qualities or characteristics would you bring to public office:
Life-long learner, critical thinker, (mostly) tireless worker, voracious reader… very committed to community building. I bring to the table an ideology formed by my basic, childhood values -- we are, in fact, our brothers' keepers. I work hard at being a team-player, and have an entrepreneurial and business background that informs my decisions when CRPS goes out on a limb to create new financial pathways to support our classrooms, such as the Outdoor Learning Centre or the International Student program, or our most recent initiative, the Banff Hospitality and Tourism Institute. We can't be waiting for the largesse of government and taxpayers to be everything we need, but whatever we do has to be viewed through a primary lens: is it good for the students? And after that… is it good for the community?
What issues are important to you as a candidate:
Continued pressure on the province to revamp the provincial funding formula to create an equitable playing field among all players, both public and publicly-funded . Seeing the fruition of the Banff Hospitality and Tourism Institute. Engaging more people, with or without children in our schools, to get excited about what 21st Century education looks like and hence what our future looks like. Supporting our teachers wherever and however we can -- they are the most passionate, vocational workers I've ever known.
Teaching isn't a job, it's a calling. Supporting our LGBTQ students, and our First Nations students, and continuing our work towards educating teachers and students on our path towards reconciliation with our First Nations neighbours.
What is the greatest challenge facing elected officials in the community when it comes to planning for the future of the community:
Making it affordable for young families to move here and remain here -- affordable and staff housing is a critical issue. People with young children are in a transitional phase of their lives, and it's usually not one that includes a ton of discretionary money. The bulk of CRPS funding comes from per-student grants from the province, but if families can't afford to stay here that funding is lost to us -- and ultimately it's a loss to every child in our system because it means there's fewer things we can offer by way of options, learning opportunities, smaller class sizes, etc.
How can people find out more about you or ask you questions: