Okay, I’ve only got like twenty minutes, so let’s whip through this.
If you’ve been following along at home, you know I’ve been slowly whittling down the list of candidates that I’d support in Orleans Ward. It started with 17 candidate, but then two unofficially dropped out. I went through all the information I could find online and reduced it a bit more. I watched the Rogers non-debate and, again, reduced my choices a bit more, still.
I’ve thought more on it, and I’ve reviewed more stuff online, and I got my choices down to the following four candidates (in no particular order): Catherine Kitts, Miranda Gray, Mireille Brownhill and Shannon Kramer. (Yes, all women. This both achieves the goal of greater representation on council and they’re the candidates I like best, regardless.)
This race went insane early on. At first, Bob Monette was running for re-election and only Gray was challenging him. Then he stepped back from politics and the candidate list exploded. What’s really interesting (to me, at least) is that this gave the chance to a lot of less-experienced candidates to give the race a shot, without being seen as too much of a neophyte.
Look at someone like Jarrod Goldsmith. It’d be a learning experience (as he admitted) to be councillor, but he does seem like he’d be up to the challenge.
Or then there’s the question of age or one’s profile in the ward. I’m thinking of Shannon Kramer here, as an example. She has a lot of knowledge about city-building, but she’s not as prominent in the ward. Her platform is well-thought out, though a little green–with many spending priorities, but also a desire to keep a cap on taxes.
These are just two examples of the people we’ve seen step forward, who we wouldn’t have, otherwise, and it’s actually pretty great, if a little overwhelming. (I’d speak more to this, but, twenty minutes…now ten.)
Let’s get to it.
Endorsement: Mireille Brownhill
She was one of the first candidates I’d had my eye on. There was a nice mix of community involvement, civic dedication and thoughtfulness. I wondered if she might be a little green on some issues..and, she probably is. If you’re not working at City Hall or some loser who watches every single municipal debate, you’re going to have a bit of a learning curve.
But here’s what I’ve seen: she’s working her way up that learning curve, quite quickly.
I’d lamented the fact that many candidates didn’t have much information online, or they didn’t have real platforms. Brownhill has come out with a six-age platform that is to-the-point, and really solid. Though I think Shannon Kramer is a little more dedicated to urbanism and city-building, I think Brownhill’s platform is a little more balanced and thoughtful.
(I’ve been using “thoughtful” a lot this election–I’ve come to believe it might be the most important quality in a councillor.)
Further, I think it’s clear where she may be a little behind in a dedication to city-building, she makes up for it in a dedication to community-building…and I think this dedication will help her adapt to and grow into the role of councillor.
With 15 active candidates, I wasn’t sure how certain I’d be able to be with this pick–I thought I might have to go with my gut or maybe just endorse a handful of people for the rest of y’all to choose from, but with her community experience, hard work on the campaign trail and a really solid platform, Mireille Brownhill wins out for me in Orleans.
No hedging. No caveats. No qualifications. No second choices. I’m choosing Brownhill with confidence and, in the end, without hesitation.
(19 minutes. Hell yeah!)