Why did you decide to run for council?
I decided to run for Councillor At Large because I was always told to be the change you want to see. I want to be a part of encouraging our city's smart growth and I want to inspire positive changes to retain our Thunder Bay citizens and to attract new citizens, businesses and opportunities. I want our younger generations to see that it is possible to get involved in local politics and that their vote does count.
What innovative projects would enhance life in your community?
I believe a Thunder Bay Integration Centre is needed. A place for anyone new to Thunder Bay to find information on housing, employment, daycare and other social supports, education, healthcare options, clubs and groups, civic involvement, volunteer opportunities, citizen rights and responsibilities. It would all be within a hub we call "Home". This integration centre would provide safe spaces for individuals to seek what they need to fully integrate into our City, including temporary housing and transitional housing.
If you received a $1 million grant to use for your city any way you wanted, what would you do with it?
I would facilitate a city-wide input process and challenge our citizens to decide how we would use the money. As an elected official, it isn't my job to determine these things; it is my job to listen and understand the needs and wants of the citizens.
What do you think are the greatest challenges your city faces?
I believe the greatest challenges for our city are: aging infrastructure with no significant commercial/industrial tax base to support a quick recovery; dwindling population which decreases our available labour force and ability to attract new business; lack of transparent local procurement opportunities for our businesses; social wellness (racism, mental health, opioid crisis) and lastly Diversity in population, career opportunities our current City council.
Other than the official ways of communicating (minutes, municipal notes), how else will you reach out to your constituents to involve them in the decision making process?
I will use blogs, Facebook, YouTube, surveys, face to face open houses and report back publicly what I have heard my constituents say. I think increasing transparency within our city is key to our success and key for our citizens to regain confidence in our City Council.
What is your favourite thing to do in your city?
Live! I participate in local festivals/activities, I utilize our green spaces, I support local businesses/markets, I work here, I went to University here, I watched my daughter graduate high school here, I visit my family here, I intrigue people to come and visit and most of all I love my life here in Thunder Bay.
What do you cherish most about your community?
Our city is the hub, the metropolis of Northern Ontario and I think that increases opportunity; I cherish our natural beauty and the people that live and breathe here.
Where can people find you?
Please follow my campaign at on Facebook or my website. I will be cohosting fundraisers in September for local community organizations. If you have an event you'd like me to attend contact me and I will make that happen.