Last May I attended various Congress events, one of which was a lecture given by former Governor General, the Right Honorable Michaelle Jean and her husband Jean-Daniel Lafond. At the end of the event, I asked if more artists should get involved in politics. As a writer who constantly thinks about my relation to the world and my community, and as someone keenly interested in politics, the question had been on my mind for some time. Lafond answered simply: “Yes. Yes, for sure.” He believes, as I do, that art – and by extension artists – can make valuable contributions to public life.
So it is with great pleasure that I am announcing today my candidacy for city councillor in Ward 6 – Barker’s Point Area. My goal, should I be successful in my bid, is to make Fredericton a better place and to stand up for the residents of Ward 6.
Let me tell you a bit about myself. I am a freelance writer and editor, and I am the author of two books of poetry. I volunteer heavily with the arts and culture sector as a board member of the WFNB, as Poetry Editor of The Fiddlehead magazine and as Associate Poetry Editor with Goose Lane editions, Canada’s oldest independent literary publisher. From time to time you may hear me on CBC’s Information Morning as Local Books Columnist. In the last year, I have also taught as part-time faculty at St. Thomas University and as an editor at Skillsoft. I first moved to Fredericton in 1994 to attend UNB, and I’ve lived here since, except for 2004-2010 when I lived and worked for a time out west. I live with my wife and son in Barker’s Point in a house on Watters Dr.
My commitments should I get elected on May 14 are:
- greater transparency,
- a more sustainable city,
- my full and unwavering support of local culture and business, and
- to dream big so that Fredericton’s reality can meet its potential.
All these things can be accomplished while maintaining fiscal responsibility.
Over the weeks and months to come I will be releasing more specific ideas under my commitments. Everywhere I have gone or visited, everyone I have talked to, I have made it a point to present Fredericton as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, highlighting the community that exists here, the trail system, the architecture, the people. It is truly one of the greatest places to live. I am proud to call it home, and if elected in Ward 6 on May 14, I will be proud to serve it as city councilor.
Please visit my website – ward6fredericton.blogspot.com – or follow me on twitter @ianletourneau for more information.