Greenspace Alliance Endorses Candidates For London Municipal Election in Oct. 2022

We sent out a press release today, listing the candidates we endorse for the upcoming election. A copy of the press release was sent to each of our endorsed candidates.

Greenspace Alliance Endorsements for London Municipal Election 

Greenspace Alliance is an environmental advocacy organization dedicated to protecting greenspace and expanding our forest canopy. In regard to the upcoming October 2022 election, We endorse the candidacies of the following candidates for London city council:

Ward 1: Hadleigh McAlister

Ward 2: Mike Yohnicki

Ward 3: Prabh Gill and Bob Wright

Ward 4: Matt Nicolaidis and Susan Stevenson

Ward 5: Connor Pierotti

Ward 6: Sam Trosow and Mariam Hamou

Ward 7: Corrine Rahman and Evan Wee

Ward 8: Steve Lehman

Ward 9: Anna Hopkins

Ward 11: Skylar Franke

Ward 12: Alex Main

Ward 13: John Fyfe Millar

Ward 14: Steven Hillier

MAYOR:

For the office of mayor, we endorse the candidacies of Khalil Rhamal and Sean O’Connell.

Our sincere thanks to every candidate who took the time to talk with us.

Confirmed by Angus Johnson, Director Greenspace Alliance (greenspacealliance.ca)

Ward 13 City Council Candidate John Fyfe-Millar Meets With Greenspace Alliance

John Fyfe-Millar is London’s City Counsellor for Ward 13. John was a city council candidate for this ward in 2018 and came in second. When the first-place winner vacated her London City Council seat, John was appointed to represent Ward 13. John has been Ward 13’s city counsellor since October 26, 2021.

John is a candidate for London City Council in Ward 13. He is seeking to be his constituents’ first choice this October and retain his seat.

I met with John and we discussed issues related to London’s downtown and need for more greenspace.

Fyfe-Millar Focused On Downtown Core

John is focused on London’s core, where most of his constituency lives. He has a good grasp of the challenges of growing London’s forest canopy in the downtown core, and he was eager to to talk about solutions.

For example, John said routine pavement renewals could be used as opportunities to identify locations for new trees. (Pavement renewals involve replacing or restoring broken, degraded, crumbling, or sunken sidewalks and parking lots.) While parking lots and sidewalks would still be replaced as needed, trees would be integrated into their restorations.

The first win for Londoners with this strategy will be economic. The City will save some of the cost of replacing pavement.  The second win will be more shade for those using our sidewalks and parking lots. The third win will be that adding trees will expand our overall urban canopy. Growing the urban canopy will be crucial to keeping our city’s core from becoming dangerously hot in the future, and John seems to understand the urgency.

I like John and enjoyed speaking with him. As a constituent in his ward, I can attest that he is accessible, respectful, and eager to find solutions for our city’s problems. I look forward to hearing more from him and his campaign to retain his City Council seat in Ward 13.

Public Service Announcement

Because homelessness is of such concern to John – and to all downtown Londoners – here is his advice about dealing with encampments, taken from John’s government webpage on which he discusses the issue at length:

“Attempting to remove an encampment or individuals can be tricky at the best of times. I can’t stress enough that should you or someone you know be affected by an encampment or individual, contact service@london.ca and ask for assistance. Please visit the Service London portal to report needles; or contact Dispatch at 519-661-4965. This phone number is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. City staff, in co-ordination with the relevant city partners, will work together to respond.”

Ward 4 City Council Candidate Susan Stevenson Meets With Greenspace Alliance

I met with Susan Stevenson, a candidate for London City Council in Ward 4.

Susan is Certified Public Accountant and has an extensive business background. She is focused on insuring financial and fiscal responsibility in city hall government.

Susan expressed enthusiasm for strengthening London’s greenspace. She conveyed herself as a strong supporter of growing London’s tree canopy. She appeared keen to redress the injustice that she said had been done to Ward 1 through the closing of River Road Golf Course.

I liked Susan. Her manner was positive, yet down-to-earth. I look forward to hearing more from her and her campaign for the City Council seat in Ward 4.

Ward 5 City Council Candidate Jerry Pribil Meets With Greenspace Alliance

I met with Ward 5 Candidate for London City Council, Jerry Pribil.

Jerry owns and operates the much-loved Marienbad Restaurant as well as Chaucer’s (my wife’s favourite pub), both of which are located downtown on Carling Street. He is well-known as an advocate for London’s hospitality and restaurant industries.

Jerry ran as the PC party’s MPP candidate for London North Centre in the June 2, 2022 provincial election. His run was unsuccessful. He is now running for London’s City Council seat in Ward 5.

Jerry impressed me as being concerned primarily about supporting business in London.

I liked Jerry and enjoyed speaking with him.

Ward 7 City Council Candidate Corrine Rahman Meets With Greenspace Alliance

On August 12th I met with Corrine Rahman, who is a candidate for London City Council in Ward 7.

Corrine was a schoolboard trustee. She was also a member of Matt Brown’s staff while he was London’s mayor.  She is currently a professor in the Business Management program at Fanshawe.

Corrine is a person with a lot of government experience.  She impressed me as being a good person to answer questions about the ins and outs of city government. She seems to know the process of how to get things done in London’s city government.

We met in Corrine’s ward and, as she looked around, she expressed concern about what we perceived to be “treeless sprawl”. Corrine expressed concern about trees being removed in her ward. She struck me as a person with great passion about protecting and expanding London’s tree canopy.

I liked Corrine and enjoyed speaking with her. I look forward to hearing more from her and her campaign for the City Council seat in Ward 7.

Ward 7 City Council Candidate Tommy Caldwell Meets With Greenspace Alliance

Tommy Caldwell is a candidate for London City Council in Ward 7. Tommy is an entrepreneur who has been involved in a number of businesses. He is the founder of Hybrid Fitness. He impressed me as being very enthusiastic about being an entrepreneur.

Tommy gave me the impression that he believes that the primary function of a municipal government is to encourage and foster business in the local community.

I liked Tommy and found him to be a very nice guy. I look forward to hearing more from him and his campaign for the city council seat in Ward 7.

Ward 6 City Council Candidate Sam Troscow Meets with Greenspace Alliance

The goal of Greenspace Alliance is to elect mayors and city councilors who will make expanding greenspace and growing our tree canopy in London, Ontario a top priority.

To that end I am interviewing every candidate who will meet with me. Those whose goals align most closely with ours at Greenspace Alliance will receive our endorsement.

Not Every Candidate Has Responded

While I have contacted every candidate running in every ward, not every candidate has responded.

Since there is still time for candidates to respond to my invitations, I am not ruling anyone out for our Greenspace Alliance endorsement at this point.

Before election day in October, I will issue a list of recommended candidates.  Until then, when I meet with a candidate, I will note it in a blog post, here, on our Greenspace Alliance Blog. The post will, likely, be very brief. But, at least, voters will know a candidate cared enough about climate change to meet with me and talk about what we can do, as a city, to be part of the solution.

Sam Troscow From Ward 6 Responded

I met today with Sam Trosow, who is running for London City Council in Ward 6.

Sam is a university teacher at Western with a strong background in political science and law.

Sam has run for London City council previously.

Sam and I discussed our common interests in protecting London, Ontario greenspace.

Sam impressed me as being experienced and knowledgeable in the workings of municipal government. He has an edge over most other candidates in that regard.

I liked Sam and enjoyed speaking with him. I look forward to hearing more from him and his campaign for the Ward 6 City Council seat.

 

City Council Candidate Julie Reynolds From Ward 1 Meets With Greenspace Alliance

We’re Interviewing City Council Candidates

The point of Greenspace Alliance is to elect mayors and city counselors who understand the climate crisis and will make expanding greenspace and growing our tree canopy in London, Ontario a top priority.

To that end I am interviewing every candidate who will meet with me. I am asking each candidate the same five questions. My goal is to to see if a candidate’s goals align with that of Greenspace Alliance. Those whose goals align most closely with ours at Greenspace Alliance will receive our endorsement.

Not Every Candidate Has Responded

While I have contacted every candidate running in every ward, not every candidate has responded.

There is still time for candidates to respond to my invitations; so I am not ruling anyone out for our Greenspace Alliance endorsement at this point.

Before election day in October, I will issue a list of recommended candidates.  Until then, when I meet with a candidate, I will note it here. The post will, likely, be very brief. But, at least, voters will know a candidate cared enough about climate change to meet with me and talk about what we can do, as a city, to be part of the solution.

Julie Reynolds From Ward 1 Responded

One candidate who responded to my invitation and agreed to meet with me was Julie Reynolds from Ward 1.

Julie Reynolds is a Ward 1 candidate for London City Council.

I met with her on August 7, 2022. We discussed issues related to our city’s canopy forecast. She talked about her desire to prevent the sale of the property on River Road that was River Road Golf Course, and which is in her ward.

Although I am not endorsing her at this writing, our conversation showed that she appears to understand that the climate crisis is  serious and requires action from municipalities.

Julie seems to want to help guide London toward greater environmental sustainability. She seems to want to mitigate London’s contribution to the climate crisis and it sounds like she will be committed to expanding our greenspace. She certainly does not want London’s greenspace reduced by the city selling River Road.

Julie has a Twitter account in which she is trying to engage people about putting equity and accountability back into politics.

I liked Julie and enjoyed speaking with her. I look forward to hearing more from her and her campaign for the Ward 1 City Council seat.

Hosted Table at Youth Eco-Activism Workshop

Jennifer Chesnut, Environmentalist In Residence at the Central Branch of the London Public Library, lead a Youth Eco-Activism workshop. My wife, Clyo, and I hosted a Greenspace Alliance table there today, along with other activist groups. I talked to students who attended about our GA agenda for London.

Detail from drawing of "Green" Ideas
Detail from drawing. Students were asked to draw ideas for decreasing our collective carbon footprint.

Ideas to increase carbon-absorbing plants in urban areas
Detail from drawing in which students were asked to draw their ideas about ways to increase carbon-dioxide storing plants in urban areas.

Ideas for lowering carbon dioxide emissions
Students were asked to draw their ideas for reducing our collective carbon footprint.

Workshop Presenter Jennifer Chesnut
Jennifer Chesnut, Environmentalist In Residence for the Central Branch of the London Public Library

Greenspace Alliance Endorses 2022 Provincial NDP Candidates

Attended “Pints and Politics” sponsored by Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) at the Arcade Bar. There I met with all three NDP candidates, discussed the Greenspace Alliance agenda with each of them, and got their support. Afterwards, I sent out an email announcement endorsing all three candidates and the NDP platform.