To keep up with who is running for what, the Western News is creating a list of all the candidates running in the civic election in the run-up to the Oct. 20 polling day. This list will be updated as we receive biographies from candidates, so be sure to bookmark this page.
Town of Oliver
Martin Johansen: Martin Johansen is the current Manager of Building Services at the City of Kelowna and is seeking the Mayor chair. He is new to Oliver and has several friends and family in the community. He is a good fit for Mayor and would bring a lot of experience, skills and perspective to Council.
Over the last couple of years, speaking to townspeople and paying attention to the issues have prepared him to take its leadership in a new direction. Strategies for improving public safety are a top priority for Martin, as is a strong economy, strong financial management and a healthy active community.
Ron Hovanes:I am a life long Oliver resident. I grew up on a mixed fruit orchard and graduated from SOSS in 1980. Tara and I have four children and six grandchildren and we feel blessed to have been able to always call Oliver home. Volunteers are the backbone of our community and I am a proud Kiwanis member and a Life Member of the Royal Canadian Legion.Together with Tara, we own and operate Hovanes Community Services.
I am running for Mayor of the Town of Oliver for a number of reasons: I believe it is important continue to build strong relationships with all levels of government. With a limited tax base, we need the support to maintain and build our community. I believe in a continued focus on Downtown revitilization. We need to continue to advocate for more police resources as were approved by an RCMP business case. We also need to strengthen bylaw enforcement and provide after hours security through an increased budget process. We also need to continue to fund ongoing support for Parks and Recreation programs and offer maintenance and upgrades to our aging facilities. Finally, I believe we need to continue to offer a business-friendly community through policy and front counter experience.
Aimee Grice: I have lived in Oliver since 2006 and sincerely appreciate the quality of life my family has here. I am a community advocate and founded the Oliver and Area Affordable Housing Society, which aim to break ground on its first project in 2019. I am Vice President of the South Okanagan Chamber of Commerce and regularly meet with business owners to understand their challenges. I love the arts and believe our dynamic arts community is key to revitalizing our local economy. I am eager to use my skills and experience to help our town grow and flourish. Photo by Jen Jensen Photography.
Larry Schwartzenberger: My wife Claire & I have lived in Oliver for 27 years. We have 3 grown children and 7 grandchildren. I have been honoured to be elected twice as a Councillor for the Town of Oliver and hope to be elected again to continue serving the people of Oliver. My top priorities for the coming term are policing & community safety, Improvements to Oliver’s network of roads & sidewalks, and enhancing Oliver’s image as Canada’s Wine Capital through Downtown Revitalization.
Dermott Hutton: My name is Dermott Hutton. I am the proud father of three young children, proud husband to my beautiful wife, Danielle, and a local small-business owner. We moved to this amazing town just over two years ago to be in a place where we can watch our children and our dreams flourish. I volunteer on the Board of Directors for the South Okanagan Chamber of Commerce and on the Pinnacles Youth Soccer as a parent coach.
I believe that in order for Oliver to grow and thrive as a community, we need a firm plan for the revitalization of our downtown core, including plans for Station Street. We have a plethora of amazing entrepreneurial citizens that, if given the right circumstances, will breathe new life into our town that we will all prosper from. Through a detailed budgeting process, we need to allocate funds towards our aging infrastructure as well as our need for security. We need to continue to pressure and work with our provincial and federal governments to properly allocate those funds in ways that keep the safety of our community paramount.
Petra Veintimilla:I am just wrapping up my first term on Council and am a very active member of our community, volunteering on numerous committees both in and around town. I was raised in Oliver and am a local businesswoman with two elementary school aged boys. As a family you will find us attending in and volunteering at as many local events as possible, all year round.
My decision to run for a second term in office is based on the love I have for my community and my desire to see Oliver shine! I am dedicated to the sustainable growth of Oliver and am committed to being an engaged, thoughtful, and progressive voice at the table.
Also running for council: Maureen Doerr and David Mattes.
Candidates running for water councillor positions are: David Machial, Rick Machial, Andre Miller, and Parminder Sidhu.
For more information about candidates running in Oliver, visit www.oliver.ca/election-information.
Okanagan-Similkameen Regional District, Area C – Rural Oliver
Rick Knodel: I was born and raised in Oliver.I enjoyed a 35 year career as a Boilermaker and worked my way to the position of superintendent. I managed projects across Canada and the United States in (power generation, chemical recovery and pulp and paper).The transient and sometimes long term nature of my work gave me the opportunity to observe the effects of a number of various urban and rural management decisions and styles.
I hope to use these observations and experiences to support the farms, small business owners and residents of Area “C”. Thanks to outgoing Director Terry Schafer who gave me the responsibility of being his alternate I have also gained considerable understanding of the operations and management of the RDOS.
Also running for director: Randy Toor.
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