While we're certainly going to be accepting nominations from the
floor at tonight's meeting, we've also already heard from a few
fine folks who are putting their names forward for our Board of
Directors. A few of our candidates passed in statements of why
they'd like to join the board. You can read a little about them
I'm originally from Nova Scotia, but I've been in St. John's for
over four years. I'm a student at MUN in Communication Studies and
Public Administration and up until this summer, I was working with
the francophone community.
For the last 7 years, I've been passionate about youth leadership
and was lucky enough to work with the french immersion and
francophone students in Newfoundland and Labrador as I was the
provincial coordinator for Franco-Jeunes de Terre-Neuve et du
Labrador (a for the youth, by the youth, non-for profit
organization). This summer, I'm in Montreal working for Youth
Employment Services, which aims to help anglophones find jobs
and/or create their own businesses, as well as volunteering for
another youth organization, Apathy is Boring, that aspires to
engage unengaged youth of our country.
You can probably sense a theme in my background and that's exactly
why I would like to join Happy City. On your website, you mention
that the goal is to faciliate public dialogue around civic issues.
Well, I believe that a great way to create this type of dialogue is
to encourage young people to get involved. If a young individual
gets involved, the potential is endless. Young adults are as
passionate about this city as the older generation and we just need
to tap into that resource. And that's the exact reason I think I
would be a bonus to the team, not only do I fall in that category
myself, I also want to encourage other students and young adults to
Hi there, I'm Morgan Murray. I'm currently the Public Policy
Intern at the Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and
Development, where I plan all sorts of public policy-related public
events. Prior to that I was a writer and designer at The Scope
newspaper and a grad student in Humanities at Memorial. Throughout,
for the past three-plus years anyway, I have morganized and hosted
the monthly event series Words in Edgewise at Eastern Edge Gallery.
I also sit on the Board of the Food Security Network of
Newfoundland and Labrador, the Memorial Public Engagement Expert
Working Group, and is part of a group planning civic engagement
activities for the new MUN Battery location. My masters thesis,
"Screw Everything, Make it Better," was about the ethics of civic
engagement. You can see/hear/watch/read much of my work on my very
brown blogmorganeliasmurray.com, including my TEDxFort Townshend
talk about the power of the snow shoveling citizen from 2012. My
Happy City is a bustling bee-hive full of neighbours living
together and looking out for one another.
Kathleen Parewick (BFA, MUP, PhD) is a community development
worker with twenty-plus years of St. John's-based volunteering
under her belt. She has supported a wide array of professional,
civic, environmental, arts and cultural organizations here,
including as a founding member of the Friends of Victoria Park and
their much-loved annual Lantern Festival. By day, she is a
researcher and project manager based at Memorial University. Her
climate change and community adaptation-related work is currently
focused on Northern Canada.
My background is in sports and athletics, dance, marketing and
development, and I've never moved away. I've worked for MUN, City
of St. Johns, and currently Bennett Group. I'm a volunteer, I live
downtown and have goats and ducks next door but can walk to upscale
shops and corporate highrises.
We can have it all.
I have a love for people, places, and great spaces; all of which
have recently brought me back to St. John's. My strongest passion
lies in facilitating community building, and public engagement
I pursue my passion professionally, as an Urban and Regional
Planner with Tract Consulting, and personally as a volunteer
coordinator, facilitator, and director for community building
Over the past five years, I have been able to contribute to the
Saskatoon community through various events. Most recently, I
directed "CurioCity 2013", Saskatoon's first Urban Idea Symposium,
in which community members, professionals, and academics were
invited to become curious about eh city, and share their urban
ideas for Saskatoon's future and community leadership. I'm most
interested in learning more about the St. John's community and
urban affairs discourse, and helping Happy City continue to build
the capacity of educated and engaged citizens in St. John's.
I am interested in becoming a member of Happy City's board of
directors because I would like the opportunity to influence the
direction the city develops. I am currently writing my Master's
thesis in Political Science at Memorial University about democracy
and the electoral system.
I am from St. John's but I have lived in and spent time in many
other cities. Because of this, I would bring interesting
perspectives and ideas to Happy City. One observation I have made
from my travels is how European cities tend to have less traffic
than Canadian cities, despite having higher populations. The reason
is simple: European cities are densely populated, walkable and have
excellent public transit. Suburban sprawl coupled with poor public
transit in the St. John's area has created car-dependence and there
appears to be no end in site to this trend. Considering the rate at
which the St. John's area is expanding, I believe we should
encourage development that would reduce traffic and car dependence,
such as building denser, walkable, mixed-use developments, along
with improved public transit.
I regret not being able to attend this evening. Please consider
my election to the Happy City board.
As Vice-Chair, and now as Interim Chair, I have had the chance
to help build Happy City St. John's as a force in the community -
and I'm so proud of all the amazing people who've come on board.
This next year will be a big one, and I look forward to the chance
to help guide the steps this city is taking towards becoming a more
engaged place - and to help Happy City grow into an even more
prominent and diverse organization.
Outside of Happy City, I work full-time for the Community Sector
Council NL, a local nonprofit, as well as administering a local
music program. I'm also chair of the board at the St. John's
Farmer's Market Cooperative, and I'm a volunteer with the
Newfoundland and Labrador Sexual Assault Crisis and Support Centre.
I'm passionate about the little things that we, as citizens, can do
to take ownership of our community.
Hedi is a nursing student at MUN, is very energetic and
enthusiastic, and is exceptionally well-organized. She has lead
multiple grassroots initiatives in the past and knows how to get
things done. She would like to contribute to St. John's, her chosen
home, and over the past year has seen that Happy City is an
organization whose vision aligns with her own.
Hedi really believes in Happy City's mission to bring people
closer to the municipal decision-making process. She worked for a
couple of years with a group in Saskatchewan called Smart Cities
Healthy Kids, a research project assessing the health of children
in urban environments. So she understands the impact our built
environment can have on our health, and believes that when people
are both the source and focus of our decision making, we will have
a better city for all.