Lacombe City Councillor Peter Bouwsema has announced that he will be running in this fall’s municipal election for the mayor’s chair.
Mayor Steve Christie announced last month he will not be seeking a third term as mayor.
“After those few weeks of research, prayer, and discussion I have decided to submit nomination papers on Sept. 18th to run for mayor of this City,” said Bouwsema during a press conference Thursday morning.
“It’s been wonderful to work with and under our present mayor for the past seven years, and I feel he’s leaving big shoes to fill,” he said. “But I’m up to the challenge, though, in seeking this new position with the City.
“And I look forward to building on the great foundation that has already been created.”
Bouwsema said that with the official campaign period beginning a bit down the road, more complete details on his campaign platform and policies will be released then, but he did emphasize that, “At this time, a large part of the platform will be related to economic development.
“The City of Lacombe has experienced great strides in development over the last few years, and we are seeing a revitalization of the downtown core as well,” he said.
“With servicing to the west area expected to occur soon, and the Lacombe Market Square ready for development, and considering the economy appears to be on the rise again, I think we will see great things happening in the next four years,” he said.
“Also, with a strong understanding of development based on my years of experience in consulting and the construction industry, I look forward to helping make new development happen as well,” he said.
“I sincerely look forward to the potential of being mayor of this fine City,” he added. “And I would be honoured with the citizens’ vote of confidence on election day – Oct. 16th.”
Bouwsema was raised in Calgary where he received his diploma in civil engineering technology.
After marrying his wife Lorraine in 1980, they relocated and have called Lacombe home for 26 years.
In 1990, Peter started his own consulting business PJB Design Consultants.
Politically, he was elected to City council in 2010 and according to the City of Lacombe web site, he has served on several boards, commissions and committees over the years including the Disaster Services Committee, Lacombe Police Commission, the Police Negotiating Committee, the Lacombe & District Chamber of Commerce Liaison, the Lacombe Heritage Survey Steering Committee and the Community Involvement & Areas of Enjoyment among several others.
“I’ve been on council for seven years, so I understand how the City is being run,” he explained. “I’m also very open to discussion – I’m very objective. I’m also a good listener, and I believe that all these things contribute to me being able to do a good job as mayor,” he said, adding that another critical aspect of being mayor is connecting effectively and consistently with the public.
“This is one of the reasons that I love this City so much – is because we have such great people within our community,” he said. “I’m very community-minded, and I look forward to working with them in a new way.
“Even though I’ve been on council for seven years, being mayor is different of course and a lot more responsibility. And I’m willing to take that on.
“I feel it’s really important for somebody who wants to become mayor to have experience on council first, because it is an incredibly huge learning curve. And having seven years now under my belt, it seems like a good time to move forward.”