Derrick Greenwood has called Airdrie home for nearly five years. The senior manager in information systems at Canadian Pacific says living and working around the globe has taught him a collaborative skill set that could be put to good use on City council.
He volunteers for a number of local organizations and says Airdrie has a sense of community that makes it a great place to live.
- Why are you running for office?
I am running for office because I feel it is my duty to participate in keeping our community a great place and contributing to the challenges we surely face going forward. My family and I love this city and we want to help others see it as the best place to live in Alberta, if not the world.
- How will you help to make Airdrie a better place to live, work and play?
My focus will be to improve opportunity for our youth. Opportunity for diverse education options, local employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, entertainment options for young and old alike as well as encouraging facilities that will support a wide range of sports of all kinds.
- What is the most important issue in this election and how do you plan to address it?
The most important issue in this election is sustainable growth. We cannot fool ourselves that the next four years will be easy. With the impact of COVID, we will need to make some tough decisions. I want to be at the table to be sure to represent the families of Airdrie and to be sure that priorities align with the people of this city’s wishes.
- How do you plan to be transparent and accountable to your constituents?
I am very open and honest at all times, not just after an election, but throughout my career and indeed, my lifetime. One of my key tenets in life is that the money that citizens entrust to the local government should be respected and treated like they had to work for it, because we all work hard for the money we pay the City and other levels of government. I am known for telling it as it is, and then working together to figure out how to solve any problems together.
- Why should residents vote for you?
As a seasoned business professional that has worked and lived all over the world, I have a keen appreciation for democracy and the inclusion of citizens in their government. As a husband and father, I have great interest in the safety of our kids and the opportunities we provide for them. I feel that the people of Airdrie are what makes this city a great place and I want to do my best to represent other families in the council chamber. I have built my career on a reputation of getting things done and I believe I can bring that to city council as well. I will absolutely serve our city’s people to the best of my ability.
We asked our readers/followers on social media what they wanted to know from City of Airdrie candidates and came up with three questions.
The answers for each candidate will be listed here and posted to airdrielife‘s social media channels on Sept 22 (question 1), Sept 29 (question 2) and Oct 6 (question 3).
Editor’s Note: The answers below are completely unedited and appear here exactly as they were sent to airdrielife via email.
1. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action published 94 “calls to action” urging all levels of government — federal, provincial, territorial and aboriginal — to work together to change policies and programs in a concerted effort to repair the harm caused by residential schools and move forward with reconciliation. Which of the Calls to Action do you believe the City of Airdrie council should focus on?
Calls to action 3, 40, 57, 77 and 83 are the ones I feel can be affected most by the city of Airdrie. I had opportunity to speak with an Elder of the Xatsull community and his message was truly eye-opening. He spoke of how his village lost all knowledge of its culture, language and history because of residential schools. Only through records kept by Danish missionaries have they been able to piece together a picture of their ancestors. We should help provide information and opportunity for this history to be rediscovered and celebrated, while all working and living together in respect and appreciation.
2. How would you work to improve arts and culture infrastructure and opportunities in the city if you were elected?
Arts and culture are key to the human experience. They help us pass our history down through generations, they expand our minds to appreciate other viewpoints and they can just make us feel good. Throughout history, art has benefited from strong economies, from the earliest cave art, to big blue ring streetlights. I believe we need to build the economic opportunities in Airdrie so there can be spaces for art and culture to thrive as we see with restaurants like Jam’s opening their walls to local artists every month. Small shops, diverse classes and accessible public spaces will help improve the arts and culture scene in our city.
3. What is your vision to help progress Airdrie’s economic growth over the next 10 years?
I believe that the city should encourage mixed-use zoning and accessible public spaces including halls, classrooms and studios. We should encourage the development of training centres and vocational and technical schools to provide our youth with opportunities to build their futures. We should encourage events, tournaments, festivals and shows to come to Airdrie. A ten-year plan should be drafted to provide a framework and guidance to development to ensure a long-term strategy to be able to handle the growth expected in the next 10 years and beyond.