Local NDP association elects its new executive

The new president of the executive is Kip Woods, a 49-year-old teacher and former president of the Nanaimo Teachers Association.

  • Feb. 23, 2015 7:00 a.m.

Nanaimo-Ladysmith NDP candidate Sheila Malcolmson outlined her campaign priorities as she welcomed newly-elected executive members of the Nanaimo-Ladysmith Electoral District Association at the federal NDP’s annual general meeting Feb. 21.

“We will protect the coastal environment, create jobs and support small business by implementing a $15 minimum wage, and care for families with programs such as the national childcare plan,” said Malcolmson. “Today, we are electing a Nanaimo-Ladysmith executive that can win the election campaign and make those  priorities a reality.”

The new president of the executive is Kip Woods, a 49-year-old teacher and former president of the Nanaimo Teachers Association.

The new vice-president is 17-year-old Avery Valerio, a full-time student and two-time member of the provincial riding executive, while long-time executive member Bob Smits was re-elected as financial agent.

Union activist Penny Kanigan was re-elected as executive secretary.

Newly-elected members-at-large include Natasha Bob, a Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District trustee and Nanoose First Nations councillor; Terre Flower, a feminist and activist who works for social justice for indigenous peoples; Trevor Dickinson, a 29-year-old Vancouver Island University (VIU) student and Fair Vote Canada organizer; Matt Bowes, a VIU professor and green business owner; and Tim Leadem, a retired environmental lawyer.

Staying on for a second term on the executive as members-at-large are Rob Hellenius, a 44-year-old media consultant and union activist, and Bill Woolverton, a retired meteorologist and long-time NDP activist in B.C. and the Yukon.

Outgoing executive president Ken Pearce reported that the Nanaimo-Ladysmith NDP will be entering the campaign in a strong position.

“Our candidate, Sheila Malcolmson, has proven her ability to work for the people of Nanaimo and the region over the past 12 years as the elected chairperson of the Islands Trust,” said Pearce.

“And we have an enthusiastic grassroots membership that has grown from 500 to 1,500 members in the last year alone.”

— Submitted