Saturday, December 31, 2022

Happy New Year!

In some ways it seems like school board elections were last week, when in reality almost 10 weeks have gone by.  The random and spur-of-the-moment conversations that walking in community during a campaign brings have been layered on to while at school and community events- always a welcome opportunity to hear what is on the mind of the folks we serve.  

I continue to appreciate the students, parents, teachers, staff and administrators in Louis Riel School Division who make time to chat, offer valued insight and perspective, and ask good and important questions about our governance work.  I value our conversations- even (and maybe especially) the tough ones. 

The new year will see us continue to grapple with the effects of a global pandemic even while we look ahead to the many opportunities that are before us.  The bright future we want for everyone in our community will be articulated in a new multi-year strategic plan, our budget conversations, and the vision we have for everyone to excel as caring, confident, capable, and resilient life-long learners who contribute to a democratic and sustainable work. 

Be well. Please make time for the people and experiences that fill your heart and bring joy to your life. 

I wish you and yours a healthy, happy and prosperous 2023.  Happy New Year!

 “The future depends on what we do in the present.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, October 25, 2022

'Twas the night before the election, and time to say thanks.

  • to everyone who assisted by walking (and walking) up driveways and stairs, in wind, rain, cold and heat to ensure information about who I am and what I'm about made it into mailboxes. 
  • to the folks who provided feedback on my flyer, and to Albert and Carol at Dycom for their patience and expertise.
  • to everyone who asked for a sign. 
  • to Bev for a very long walk on a beautiful Sunday morning!! and for moral support and encouragement when needed the most- and not just during elections.
  • to Nikolas for encouragement and support (from across town this time), and for all of the conversations we've had and continue to have about local politics and the future of Winnipeg.
  • to Pam and the 'minis' for their smiles as we walked the far corner of the ward (especially so early in the day!!) and to Paige for doing it with a skip in her step and a broad repetoire of songs. 
  • to Bailey for the conversations that have provided valued insight and perspective, always infused with good humour and laughter. 
  • to Linn for the photos; I'm not photogenic but she made me look half-way decent!
  • to those of you I've been texting and messaging like mad as election day got closer-  you know who you are and I appreciate your common sense, logic, calm influence and really good and positive vibes!

And thank you to Eve, who hands down walked the most number of steps only after the number I took.  By our last flyer drop, this kid could deliver a street effortlessly and like a pro, spot a 'no flyers' sign on a mail box from the street, navigate a mapped route, and put stakes on a sign with ease. We covered a lot of ground, in steps and in conversation, and it was fun to get to know the youngest member of the 'team' a bit better.

One. More. Sleep. 

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Informing your school trustee vote

This is the week when, collectively, voters in school division wards across Manitoba will elect their representation to school boards to serve a four year mandate.  

When we are handed a ballot we will be invited to 'vote for one trustee', OR 'vote for up to two/three/four trustees' depending on how many are elected where we reside.   

Doing some research is important, and mindful that many have voted at advance polls, here is how to inform your vote for school trustee:

  • visit Winnipeg Election 2022 for another source of information, again provided by candidates in response to an invitation to do so*
  • call candidates or send them an e-mail and ask the questions that are on your mind
  • if they are on social media, visit their platforms
  • if you live in LRSD, all candidates were invited to a forum, which can be viewed at LRSD.TV 
  • many teachers associations sent out candidate questionnaires which were posted on websites and social media platforms.

Visit the Manitoba School Boards election site for more information. 

Three more sleeps until election day!!

*includes mayoral and city councillor candidate responses as well.

Monday, October 17, 2022

Brought to you by the letters LRTA and ATC

Props to the Louis Riel Teachers Association for organizing the first ever (as far as I know) LRSD trustee candidate forum this evening, and to all those that attended in person and remotely.  Students in the ATC Broadcast Media program were set up to live-stream the event, and students in the ATC Cake and Pastry program provided post-forum treats. 

That's it, that's the post; might be my shortest one ever!

9 days until the election. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Chance of showers, with a trustee forum a certainty.


It was bound to happen eventually.  After successive warm and sunny days over the long weekend, we are likely to see rain tomorrow.  It's been a great run so far weather wise for campaign 2022!

My day started and ended in the company of some LRSD folks- talking, sharing, listening and learning, with lots of laughter as well.  These are some of my greatest teachers and they have patience for my questions, always broadening my perspective and understanding with their answers and insight. 

Inbetween, I was walking Ward 3.  There were prolonged conversations along the way that allowed me further insight into what is on the minds of voters as it pertains to public education, but that naturally segued into municipal and provincial politics. 

The Louis Riel Teachers Association is hosting a candidate forum on October 17, which I will be participating in. 

They are working to live-stream as well, so connect with them on Twitter for updates. 

14 days until the election.

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Gleanings from the campaign trail

In running my 4th campaign there are things that I continue to be grateful for; shared sidewalks and driveways are two of them.  Short driveways are another.  Only one or two steps up to the mailbox also makes the list.  

If I had a nickel for everyone person who has asked if I'm part of the Nemeth Diamonds Nemeth's I'd be sitting pretty. Well, not rich but defiantly able to buy myself a grande pumpkin spice latte. I'm sure we're connected on some distant branch of the family tree.  Clearly they have lots of happy customers out this way. 

Last Sunday was a +20,000 step day.  The weather was beautiful and I was motivated but I sure paid for it on Monday; my back, hips, quads and feet were screaming from pounding the pavement. 
Did I learn from overdoing it? Yup; the steps have decreased each day but I suspect they will creep up over the weekend with some nicer weather on the way and the pain in my joints almost gone. Plus I still have a few thousand houses to get to. 

Canvassing at seniors and retirement residences is great fun. I hope when I'm 80 or 90 I'm as feisty as some of the folks I've met are.  Today I was thanked for being a school trustee, and then peppered with excellent questions by the grandma of an LRSD alumnus. 

And the Halloween decorations!!  I've seen some yards that look like they were set up by professionals. 

I've spent some time looking at other campaigns by school trustee candidates all over town; it's important to learn about the folks that aspire to elected governance.  Lots of good info here: and here:

Have a really nice Thanksgiving weekend!

19 days until the election. 

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Why are you running for re-election to the board?

What a beautiful day for getting some information out to residents of Ward 3.  The campaign 'team' has expanded with Mom and Sis pitching in; win-win as I get the help and they get some fresh air and exercise.

Folks are asking why I'm running again (or as one person framed it "why on earth would you want that job these days?").

First, I want to do what I can to protect the investments that our board has made over the last number of years and will continue to make in the name of student engagement and success.  Expenditures in support of full-day kindergarten, our DEI and Anti- Racism Initiative, the work of our Indigenous Education Team, and in mental health and wellness for students, staff and families (among many others) are having a positive impact.  We know this because the data we collect allows us to track our progress. 

Second is wanting to do my part to ensure LRSD  receives the funding that ensures these investments are supported long term, even as we identify more areas requiring support.  The new funding model must ensure adequate funding within a model that is sustainable and predictable.  Anything less has the potential to see needed programs and supports jeopardized.   

While navigating Bill 64 was stressful (to say the least) the engagement and information that was shared was key to its demise.  I want to continue the work of providing information; to our community and to government about the successes we celebrate, the challenges we are navigating, and how we all have a role to play.  Advocacy, engagement and communication is crucial.

That's not a complete list of reasons, but I'll wrap up on a purely personal level- I love the work.  It is important, rewarding, extremely fulfilling, and I have lots of fun.  I have met people who have challenged and broadening my thinking. I've been part of conversations that have offered necessary perspective.  I've learned things that I needed to learn. I don't take the role or responsibility lightly, and I take every opportunity afforded me to learn and grow to ensure I am the best trustee I can be in service to my community. 

23 days until election day.

Happy New Year!

In some ways it seems like school board elections were last week, when in reality almost 10 weeks have gone by.  The random and spur-of-the-...