A sincere thank you to all the citizens of North Vancouver who have put their trust in me to lead our community through the difficult challenges ahead over the next four years. I will do everything in my power to live up to my promises of bringing a professional perspective to council, enhancing opportunities for youth, young adults and families in our community and being engaged, open and transparent. To my new colleagues Roger, Jim, Robin, Doug, Lisa and Richard, I look forward to working together with you over the next four years to tackle these challenges, seize the opportunities before us and make the best long term decisions for the citizens of the District.
To my fellow candidates, it has been my honour to get to know you and learn from you over the past six weeks. You have shown a passion and willingness to put yourselves in front of the community, to challenge old ideas and be challenged in return. I am certain that your passion will not end with the campaign and encourage you all to continue your involvement in civic life. It takes more than six councillors and one mayor to build the best community for us all to live in.
I could not have achieved a seat on council without the dedicated support of a whole team of individuals. I would like express my sincere thanks to the following people:
Sarah, my campaign manager, for keeping us organized and on track.
Ilana, my volunteer coordinator, for rounding up and communicating with our volunteers.
Rachid, my financial agent, for keeping us transparent and financially viable.
Andy for pulling together a fantastic brand and designing all of our graphics.
John for keeping our website in tip-top shape.
Paul and my father Stanley for building the sturdiest, vandal resistant signs.
Barry and Norma for providing professional photography.
Mike and Derrick for providing me a solid base of knowledge to get my campaign rolling.
Sharon, Dennis, Steve, Clemens, Andrew, my mother Deborah and father and mother in law Norman and Georgia for being my crew on the ground putting up signs, handing out brochures, knocking on doors and serving bacon.
Sarah, Alan, Ash, Susan and Erin for helping research the issues and edit my written ideas.
Andrew, Scott, Stephanie, Andy and Morgan for being my champions on social media.
All the generous individuals who believed enough in me to support my campaign with a financial contribution.
An extra special thank you to my wife Michelle, who believed in me from the start, encouraged me to put my name forward and stood beside me through the entire campaign.
I would also like to thank all the friends and strangers who I met during the campaign who through such simple phrases as "I believe in you" or "We need a fresh face on Council" provided me with the encouragement to keep going. Your encouragement motivated me to stay up late answering surveys, fixing signs and returning phone calls, even when all I wanted to do was get more than 4 hours of sleep.
One particularly inspiring theme to me was the number of people in my generation who were first time voters. "I'm 34 years old and have never voted in a civic election" was a phrase I often heard. "After reading your website and speaking with you, I finally see someone who can represent and understand what I believe in, what I am concerned about and what I want to see done differently. I'm happy to cast my first vote for you." I will work hard to honour and respect the trust these citizens have placed in me. I will also actively reach out and engage with the 80% of citizens who did not vote in the election, to stress the importance of civic life and encourage greater involvement over the next four years.
My favourite moment during the campaign was my visit to École Dorothy Lynas Elementary. The opportunity to spend an hour with eighty students, asking them what their vision for a kid friendly city was and comparing their vision to the city they believe adults have built for them was both inspiring and humbling. The full meaning of the experience wasn't really driven home to me until a mother of one of the students stopped by my booth in Lynn Valley Mall. She related her experience as her twelve year old son arrived home from school that day inspired about the upcoming election and full of questions about the community. She said "The only thing my twelve year old son could talk about at dinner was your activity and his excitement about civic issues and the election. If you can engage a twelve year old in something that 80% of adults don't care to participate in, I know you are the right person for council."
I want to see our citizens and neighbours take pride in our shared community and get involved in the civic process. I encourage you to stay involved with me via Facebook, Twitter and email. Over the next few weeks I will be transitioning my website out of campaign mode and into a format more conducive to civic engagement. I plan to provide regular updates on my activities, keep an active calendar so you can meet me in person and provide a forum to discuss the opportunities we would like to pursue to create a better North Vancouver. Please stay in touch.
Mathew Bond, PEng
Your Councillor, District of North Vancouver