Airdrie elects one incumbent, one new school trustee
The votes are in and the unofficial winners for Rocky View Schools (RVS) board of trustees for Ward Three are incumbent Sylvia Eggerer with 2,485 votes and Todd Brand with 966 votes.
The results will not be official until noon on Oct. 25.
This will be Eggerer’s third consecutive term on the board.
“My thanks and appreciation to the people of Airdrie. I will work my hardest for you,” she said.
She said whenever any candidate puts his or her name forward and enters the election it takes a lot of courage.
A thought echoed by Premier Alison Redford who express congratulations in a message she released to all municipal candidates on Oct. 21.
“To all the candidates who took on the courageous step of putting their names on a ballot, I want to thank you, your families, your campaign teams and volunteers for your willingness to serve the pubic and take part in the democratic process,” Redford said in the press release.
Eggerer said she is used to focusing on children and the issues surrounding education and is not fond of having the focus off the issues and put on to her as a candidate.
However, she is happy to serve the people for another four years.
“I think it’s a reaffirmation that Airdrie is a growing city, that it is a great community. We have our growing pains but I believe strong schools build strong communities and that’s what we’re doing building strong schools and communities.”
Eggerer said she knows there are a lot of hard questions about RVS abut said she believes the school board is on the right track.
She said the biggest sign of success she is seeing are parents who went through the RVS system as students are now bringing their own children back to Airdrie to ensure their kids are RVS students too.
She said she would like to collaborate with all the Ward Three candidates in order to keep them involved in education in the city and to have an opportunity to hear their concerns and the feedback they received from parents while campaigning.
Phyllis McCallum-Hunter, who came in fourth place with 806 votes, said though she is disappointed she will not be on the board as a trustee, she is interested in working with the other candidates and the trustees to make education and RVS the best it can be for the community.
“It was never about us individually,” she said, adding all the candidates were in the election because they want to do what’s best for students and the community.
She said as a group working together, the trustees and candidates can do a lot to make education a priority for the community.
Brand, a former teacher, said gathering input from all candidates is a great idea.
“That would be hugely valuable,” he said, adding the more voices they can hear the better.
He said he is very excited and eager to start work on the board.
“It feels very good, overwhelming as well but very good,” he said of winning his seat.
Eggerer said it’s great to have a new voice on the board and hopes she can act as a resource to Brand should he require it in his new role.
“I’m pleased I’m going to be there to help bring him through the transition,” she said.
She said she thinks Brand is aware of the issues facing Airdrie and RVS and that his background in education may help reduce the learning curve for him.
“I would have a lot more fear and trepidation without having (Eggerer) on the board,” Brand said.
He added he has also received emails for other trustees offering him their support and guidance should he need it.
He said the campaign experience was very good but tiring. He added he thought it was a very positive campaign that focused on the issues.
“I was pleased so many people were running for trustee because it got so many people interested in the issues,” he said.
Brand added he owed much to his wife Coral who took on a lot in order to make him available to campaign.
“She just did so much work helping me with my campaign.”
Incumbents Norma Lang, Helen Clease retained their seats as trustees. Bev LaPeare and Colleen Munro where acclaimed and Fiona Gilbert will be joining the board as Ward Six trustee for the town of Cochrane.
Brand, Eggerer and the other trustees will be sworn in at the RVS Education Centre on Oct. 31, at 11 a.m.