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ELECTION 2022: Summerland’s council candidates discuss qualifications

Each week, the Summerland Review is questioning the candidates in the local government election
Election signs are on display around Summerland. The election for a mayor, six municipal councillors and two school trustees, takes place Saturday, Oct. 15. (John Arendt - Summerland Review) Election signs are on display around Summerland. The election for a mayor, six municipal councillors and two school trustees, takes place Saturday, Oct. 15. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)

During this election campaign, the Summerland Review is asking questions of the candidates running for the position of mayor and councillors.

This week’s question: What qualifies you to sit at the council table?

Doug Holmes


I believe I’ve proven myself over the last eight years as councillor, four years on the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen, and two years on the Okanagan Basin Water Board. I’ve served as council liaison to the Chamber of Commerce, Arts Council, and high school shadow council. My understanding of the issues runs deep and across the breadth of the community, not just in a few special interest areas. Together with my years of community involvement and professional experience in journalism and business, there’s a lot to draw on. It has shaped me as a leader and I believe the best way I can now contribute is as mayor. More details:

Chuck Pinnell


I’ve been watching municipal politics for a great many years and I consistently see dissatisfaction with choices almost immediately after the vote. My qualifications include tools, resources, and understand about how to effectively connect with residents and engage them in ways that fosters inclusivity.

I encourage people to get out and vote. You can make a difference; get informed, choose wisely.

I have a servant’s heart, I am not a politician, I am a team player.

I have been a realtor and office owner. I have done business in five countries. I have been a vice president of sales for two international direct sales companies. I believe my business experience, and having a fresh set of eyes, will be valuable to the people of Summerland.

I love Summerland. We moved here in 2004 from Kamloops.

Richard Barkwill


Coming from a Summerland farming family and having a degree in agriculture gives me an essential understanding of this great town. As a qualified CPA, I also bring greater financial understanding to the table.

The world is always changing and Summerland will change with it. My goal is to preserve the character and liveability of the town while accommodating its growth.

Brad Besler


I have a business degree from Simon Fraser University and own Big Dog Fencing, a Summerland-based business. I have attended many council meetings and am familiar with how municipal hall works. I am ready to hit the ground running. I have good intentions and am running on 100 per cent principle. I love this town and will work hard to make a positive impact in Summerland.

Adrienne Betts


What qualifies me to sit at the council table is my demonstrated commitment to the vibrant Summerland community. I am a female business owner at the successful, family-operated Granny’s Café and Bakery. Through our business I am able to connect in-person with many individuals, youth, seniors and families; as well as the Summerland Chamber of Commerce, Summerland Women in Business, Rotary Club and Giant’s Head Elementary. Granny’s Café has supported the Summerland Food Bank and the Princeton flood evacuees. We participate in community events like the Fall Fair and Sunday Farmers Markets. I am a mother of two elementary school students and witness many of the challenges that families face and what supports we need for our youth to thrive. These connections demonstrate a network of collaboration and support, connections that I believe could be great assets on council.

Peter Bognar


My extensive experience in the Okanagan as president of Chamber of Commerce, Gellatlly Nut Farm Society, trustee of an 80,000-student board, Director of Economic Development Commission, founder of a bursary awarding two $5,000 scholarships and numerous other senior positions.

Toni Boot


My council voting history over the last eight years reflects my commitment to making Summerland a safe, healthy and resilient community.

I am well-prepared for meetings and ask questions of staff in public meetings.

While we don’t always agree, I listen carefully to my colleagues’ perspectives and participate in the deliberations. I am currently elected to several boards — some related to local government and others not — giving me experience in working as a team and building relationships.

Because I grew up in Summerland, raised my two sons here, volunteer regularly and co-own a local business, I have broad community and regional networks.

Doug Loepp


I am an experienced media professional who has worked in the broadcast industry for nearly 30 years. I pride myself on community service and have volunteered my time to several charitable organizations.

I served as vice president of Crime Stoppers of the Central Okanagan and most recently was president of Okanagan Kids Care.

Blair Parker


With more than 20 years in business management, where being accountable and fiscally responsible is paramount, I’m certainly qualified. I have an in-depth knowledge of budgeting, human resources, program management, and complex problem solving.

Doug Patan


My 20+ years experience working for municipal governments in Alberta and B.C. has allowed me to have a perspective on policy, procedures and Bylaws in different jurisdictions.

This experience allows me to assess how councils actions and decisions affect our community based on the correspondence brought forward.

Janet Peake


I was a councillor in Summerland from 2014 to 2018. I then ran for mayor in the 2018 election, missing being elected by around 600 votes.

I moved to Summerland 12 years ago to be near my daughter, son in law and now three grandchildren. I moved from the District of Muskoka in Ontario. There I had worked on council for 12 years and seven years as a mayor.

My passion is looking after and helping to create a vital, active, civil, and interesting place to live. To provide a stable inclusive community where people, businesses and industry can thrive.

I have been involved in many things, Summerland’s Cultural Plan, The museum, Summerland’s Arts Council and the Summerland Food Bank and Resource centre, two organizations where I am presently the president. I recently came off the Kettle Valley Steam Railway board.

I enjoy working with people to create supportive networks to get work, change and opportunities to open up. Most organizations including council work by consensus, so a team effort is required. I have been a community representative for many years and recognize the need to look after what we have, such as roads and other infrastructure. A requirement to be fiscally responsible well still improving and moving forward where we can.

Nick Redding


I believe what qualifies me to sit on council is that I have a vested interest in the town and the people within it.

I have lived in Summerland for 28 years and have run a successful business eight of those years. I am a personable, open-minded and honest person who likes to help others.

Throughout my life in Summerland, I have met and spoken with a lot of residents who have voiced their concerns about the issues within the community to me.

Mark Smed


I love teamwork! I want someone who is going to be willing to listen to many viewpoints, put their personal opinions aside and do what is best for the community. I like when candidates are interested in serving the community without having an agenda. The difficulty is we each have unique ideas about what we want Summerland to look like.

I love this town. Both my daughters were born and raised here, my wife attended school here and I have lived here for more than 30 years. I believe my strongest qualification is a desire to give back to a community that has enriched my life and my family. I love the life I have today and the freedom to volunteer and give back to the community.

Community engagement. I enjoyed my many years involved with South Okanagan Similkameen Canadian Mental Health Association branch and Pathways Addiction Resources Society as a board member. I have participated in other community organizations. I brought my decades of business and technical knowledge to each and enjoyed working with others to bring as much success as possible to any organization.

I’m passionate about understanding the issues. I am currently spending a couple of hours per day reviewing the thousands of pages of minutes, reports and plans in Summerland/Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen websites.

Erin Trainer


Over my two terms on council, I have acquired a lot of knowledge about how local government works and about Summerland’s unique challenges and opportunities. That being said, I am always open to learning more and hearing new perspectives.

While I represent young working families, I know the struggles we all face, from the increased cost of living and doctor shortages to the climate crisis. I’ve got the energy and willingness to help lead Summerland through the next four years.

I am a team player and work well with others. I understand I am only one voice on council, and that council must work together to get things accomplished.

Finally, as I have both young children and older parents living here, I can appreciate and incorporate the needs of different generations into my decisions.

Marty Van Alphen


I am seeking my third term on municipal council.

In the past I have served on the Summerland Chamber of Commerce as a director and two terms as president. I started and ran my own business for 16 years and have been farming for another 16. I know how to read a budget, am fiscally responsible and can play nice in the sandbox.

John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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