Candidates for the 2014/15 Board of Directors

Hello Happy Citizens!

In preparation for our Annual General Meeting tomorrow, (6 PM at Key Assets, 120 LeMarchant Road) here's a rundown on who is running! We have a total of 11 seats on our board. To keep continuity, our board terms are two years long and elections are staggered so that we elect half the board at any one time.  That's the theory, at least J In reality, we do lose people when they move away from time to time, which can throw our nice neat schedule off.

That said, this year, we're pretty close!  Of the board members elected to 2-year terms last year, a total of 4 people are staying around.  That leaves us with one 1-year term and 6 2-year terms available.

We like to leave things open for motions from the floor of the meeting, but we do also offer potential board members a chance to send a quick bio in advance. Here are the ones we have for you:

Candidates Running for Election or Re-Election

Elizabeth Oliver

Elizabeth is a longtime community volunteer who is active with the Georgestown Neighbourhood Association and has over the past year served as Secretary on the Happy City Board, where she has taken particular interest in and leadership of efforts to engage and foster neighbourhood-level engagement.

Kathleen Parewick

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. Kathleen is a longtime member of the Happy City Board of Directors and is excited to return.

Tim Peckford

Hello, my name is Tim Peckford and I am looking to run for an at-large position on the Happy City St. John's Board of Directors.

I was born and raised in Newfoundland and Labrador, and have been a happy resident of St. John's for about six years now. I have completed two degrees at MUN, I've built a career and a life here in the city and, although I do enjoy everything it has to offer, I recognize that there are things that could use improvement. I know some of the board members outside of Happy City, and through following the activities of the organization and speaking with members I have realized that this is an organization that I would like to plant roots with.

I know that I have not been a long-active member of the organization, but trust me when I say that does not take away from the passion I have for this city, its people, or its character. I love this city, I love this province, and would jump at any opportunity to work with Happy City to grow the organization and help make St. John's an even better place to live.


Norman Turner

My name is Norman Turner. I work with a local property developer as a day job and I am passionate about quality urban design, affordable housing and smart development.

In addition to my experience and perspective I am also interested in Happy City because I believe that there needs to be more communication between the public and the development community on a positive basis and hope that I can help build these links and as a result improve the quality of development in the city.

My professional qualification is in real estate management and appraisal and my career has included property development both in Canada and Europe and I have also been involved in social and affordable housing. Most recently I served on the board of one of the country's largest privately owned non-profit organizations.

I also have significant experience in the non-profit sector including the TD Friends of the environment foundation, 3 non-profit housing boards and I currently serve on the board of the Shipwreck Preservation Society.

My work experience also includes working with the Small Craft Harbour Branch of DFO proving support to non-profit harbour authorities and managing marine infrastructure, running my own real estate consultancy and as VP Asset Management with Canada's Largest private pooled real estate fund provider.


Returning Board Members

Hedi Hother-Yishay

Hedi is a nursing student at MUN, is very energetic and enthusiastic, and is exceptionally well-organized. She served as Vice-Chair of the 2013-14 Board of Directors at Happy City. Hedi 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.

Dana Parsons

Dana's background is in sports and athletics, dance, marketing and development, and she has never moved away. She's worked for MUN, City of St. Johns, and Bennett Group, and is now on air at Coast FM. Dana is a volunteer who lives downtown and has goats and ducks next door but can walk to upscale shops and corporate highrises. We can have it all.

Robert Ring

I was drawn to Happy City's board of directors out of a desire to influence the direction the city develops. I recently finished writing my Master's thesis in Political Science at Memorial University about democracy and the electoral system.

I am from St. John's but 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.

Josh Smee

As Chair of the 2013-14 Board,  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 with us. 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 part-time for the Community Sector Council NL, a local nonprofit, as well as administering a local music program and working on a Master's Degree (doing a Happy City project, as it happens).  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.





Written by Happy City at 12:51

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September 30, 2014 01:51


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