I am the owner along with my family of Grand Forks Funeral Home. I am married to Deborah and have three grown children: Christine-Ann Fisher (spouse David), Aaron Baker (spouse Shannon), Hannah Jean Kalesnikoff (spouse Adam) and a grandson, Cassius. My children all live, work and volunteer here in the Boundary.
I am a strong believer in volunteerism. I have been president of the Boundary Food Bank, a member, president and padre of the Grand Forks Royal Canadian Legion, past chair of the Grand Forks Social Services Advisory Group, and a rotarian.
For the past eight years, I have worked along side our previous MLA, Linda Larson. Over the last year, I served as her constituent assistant and have been a strong advocate for Grand Forks and the surrounding area. I have also served on the board of the Funeral Association of British Columbia.
I will always recognize and work for everyone in our community. I will never forget that I am here at the will of the people; that I would represent them and work to make Grand Forks a city that comes together and works for the common good.
I will continue to encourage the business initiatives started by the Downtown Business Association and the Boundary Country Regional Chamber of Commerce. I will continue to support them in any way I can.
I do not support no-barrier supportive housing as presented by BC Housing. Without complete wrap-around support that includes mental health services, drug rehab and detox, there is no way it should be allowed in Grand Forks — certainly not on 2nd Street, which would cause serious hardship to our downtown businesses.
I was impressed with how Boundary Family Services operated the extreme cold weather shelter on Donaldson Drive last year, starting in January. Their involvement with the local neighbourhood, and the good neighbour policy they implemented made the operation palatable and a success. I will continue to support their initiatives due to their success rate.
There is a need for low-cost housing and seniors’ facilities. I want to see us provide a venue for our Seniors Society, whose needs have not been addressed since they lost their building in the flood of 2018. This is reprehensible in a city made up of 54 per cent seniors, especially when we consider their contributions to our community.
I want to work towards completing the necessary work to protect our citizens from flooding. We need to focus and prioritize our attention onto our crumbling infrastructure.