Hello Chestermere! It has been an absolutely crazy week with the impending resumption of the Legislature, various Halloween themed happenings, the UCP Leadership race, and just general chaos.
I want to speak a little bit about public service. I have been privileged to work with our previous councils, Reeves, and Mayors. I was able to attend the swearing in ceremonies for the Chestermere and Strathmore Councils and I felt profoundly grateful watching these people take their places.
Chestermere has an all-new council and Rocky View and Strathmore have many new faces as well. I know that feeling of being a new public servant, and the excitement, the nausea, and the feeling that there is so much to learn, and there is. The key for me in this world is to be open to new ideas, people and processes. Public service is exactly that. The privilege of serving our communities and that comes with some amazing highs, and some terrible lows. Social media has made it easy for us as politicians to reach you every day with a new concept, or video telling you what we think, who you should vote for and of course “Happy Whatever”.
For those of you following the leadership race and more specifically my Facebook page, those tools can be extremely powerful and remarkably demeaning depending on the author. I have learned so much from the leadership race for the United Conservative Party. I would like to thank all the amazing volunteers that put in hours of tireless work. There were a ton of issues with getting personal identification numbers or PINs. A gazillion calls, texts, and reminders about who to vote for, when to vote, how to vote, problems with voting…the list goes on and on. I was honoured to speak with so many of you as we went through this campaign together. You as a community are some of the most wonderful people I have ever encountered. Thank you for your patience with the process. I want to personally thank Nathan Cooper who was our interim leader for the UCP, and Richard Gottfried and Mike Ellis who were on the leadership team. I want to thank the candidates who spent days, weeks, and months away from their families, giving up other positions, and spending a great deal of time in our communities getting to know the people they were wanting to represent. I am truly honoured to have been part of Brian Jean’s campaign. It was such a massive privilege to work with this beautiful group of volunteers. And to Jason Kenny, nothing but the sincerest of congratulation on his win, and onto another by-election as Dave Rodney, MLA for Calgary Lougheed, steps down for you to run in his riding. Phew! I know politics is convoluted, confusing, and may seem disappointing, but within us is the ability to accept, adapt, and move on. We are a small group of people who continue to work together, and more importantly our job was to unite Conservatives under a new leader. This was the goal, and it is part of the responsibility of the UCP MLAs to move on and put our family back together. I am especially honoured that Mr. Jason Kenny asked me to be his Deputy Leader and it is with the greatest humility that I accept this position. I look forward to continuing to work for you, and as we see our boundaries change from Chestermere – Rocky View to potentially Chestermere – Strathmore, there will be more work to earn your vote in this riding in 2 years. It is never boring! As always we love to hear from you.