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The Carillon - ONLINE EDITION

Trustee sets sights on city council seat

By: Jordan Ross

Posted: 06/11/2018 9:25 AM

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A veteran Hanover School Division trustee wants to serve the citizens of Steinbach in a different capacity come October.

Cyndy Friesen will look to trade her trustee chair for city council seat in the autumn general elections.

In a release, Friesen said she’d bring to city hall 12 years of experience as a school trustee, and 16 years of expertise in human resources.

Friesen has also co-chaired the annual Relay for Life spring fundraiser and sits on the board of Agape House, a women’s shelter in Steinbach.

"I feel like I have a lot of experience that I can offer to keep making this a great city," she told The Carillon.

With her two children grown, Friesen said the time seemed right to funnel her energies into municipal politics.

"I’ve always been engaged in politics and I understand the challenges of being in public life," she said.

"The best part of being a trustee for me was seeing all the kids in action…That part I’m really going to miss."

Calling her school board experience "very transferable to city council," Friesen highlighted her involvement in drafting policies, crafting budgets, and interacting with different levels of government.

However, if elected, she said she anticipates a learning curve, especially because at least three of seven council seats are opening up.

"It’s a great opportunity to start fresh."

Friesen was reluctant to discuss details of her platform, which she plans to release after the candidacy period officially opens on June 30, but said she plans to begin campaigning later this summer.

Asked whether the under-representation of women in Manitoba municipal politics was a factor in her decision to run, Friesen suggested the key to good governance is simply passion for the political process.

"I don’t consider myself a trailblazer. I think if you are interested in politics, you should go with your love…regardless of what your gender is."

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