Peachland Coun. Keith Thom has announced his candidacy for mayor of district. —Image: contributed

Peachland councillor announces bid for mayor

Keith Thom says after four years on council, he feels he’s ready

Peachland Coun. Keith Thom wants to the district’s next mayor.

Thom announced Monday he will seek the role of mayor seat in the upcoming October municipal election.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my current term serving the good people in the District of Peachland and believe the four years experience has prepared me for such an important task,” he said in announcing his candidacy.

In addition to the knowledge and experience gained at the council table, he said his three terms representing Peachland council as a director on the Southern Interior Local Government Association (SILGA) has garnered him additional valuable skills and insight.

“SILGA has provided me the opportunity to meet several other elected officials and learn about the various and diverse challenges faced by small, medium, or large municipalities. As a SILGA board member I’ve also been fortunate to meet with numerous provincial ministers,” Thom said.

“Such experience has bolstered my networking and relationship building skills, which I believe are vital traits needed in being an effective mayor.”

He said he is now just as comfortable in formal meetings and negotiations involving premiers and senior provincial ministers as he is enjoying one-on-one chats with local residents in coffee shops.

Aside from the political realm, he said he brings diverse business experience to the table, including starting a successful landscape, design and construction company, several years as a senior manager re-structuring nursing homes and teaching adults as an occupational health and safety instructor in the manufacturing sector.

Thom is also a popular professional singer and songwriter (Papa Thom) whose talents have resulted in numerous tours and concerts from B.C to Ontario and a well-received album titled Invisible.

If elected mayor, Thom said he would commit to fostering a council culture that is both thoughtful and progressive.

“I believe one of the duties of the mayor is to be supportive of councillors by providing sufficient information locally, regionally and provincially in order to help them make concise, educated decisions around the council table. Another trait critical to the mayor’s position is to ensure all councillors have the unfettered opportunity to participate fully in all meetings.”

Thom said he would have an “open door policy”—meeting not only with any and all staff or councillors, but also with members of the public.

“I love Peachland and have been thrilled and honoured to serve this wonderful community the past four years. I would cherish the opportunity to do so again in the role as mayor.”

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