David Ondieki, Liberal
Current occupation: Nurse manager with Covenant Health and AHS.
What are the three most pressing issues facing central Alberta residents, and how will you address them?
Residents in Red Deer-Lacombe are extremely concerned about the current state of our health care system. Some have expressed concerns that two tier health care and privatization are in our future. I can assure constituents that a Liberal government will never allow our system of universal health care to be undermined.
In the same vein there have many concerns expressed about seniors care. The Trudeau team shares those concerns and has committed significant funding to ensure updated standards of care for our seniors.
Finally, there has been considerable concern regarding the fact that Alberta is not yet a part of the national child care program which would result in $10 a day child care. Families feel this is a key element in allowing them grow and thrive. Myself and all Liberals agree. We are committed to high quality programs managed by skilled staff that meet the diverse needs of families. We will not waiver on this commitment.
A few more things …
Where were you born/raised? Where do you live now?
I was born and raised in Kenya, worked as an accountant with a bank before I moved to the USA where I received both my accounting degree, nursing diploma, and MBA from Texas A & M University.
If you have served in office before, what have you learned? Why are you running now?
I have not run for a political office before. I have been involved in community issues and currently the president of the Association of Kenyan Community in Alberta. I am running for office now because I understand what ails people at the grassroot level, particularly with the current pandemic that has brought suffering to the low income and middle income families. As a frontline nurse and having worked during this difficult time, I felt that no one understands the ordinary citizen more than someone who is part of that class and that is me. In addition, my experience growing up in a third world country has given me a better perspective of what is needed to give voice to the people of my constituency.
Why do you make a good representative for your constituents in the legislature?
I understand the range of issues individuals and families are facing, particularly in a post-COVID world. This has been a traumatic time for many and their struggles need to be given a voice. I want to be that voice for the people of Red Deer – Lacombe. I want to be part of moving forward with them while being part of the larger Liberal team that wants to ensure their success and wellbeing.
Tell us a surprising or interesting fact or story about yourself.
When I moved to the USA, I had only $1,000 with which I was expected to pay for my fees and start me off life. Because there was no any other support and money that I received from Africa after arriving in the USA I was forced to work two full-time jobs and go to school full-time. Half way through my accounting degree, I was forced to join nursing school out of necessity while still working full-time. It was not easy but again with hardwork, determination, and persistence I completed both my nursing and accounting education without any loans but paying for myself from the meager jobs that I used to do.
Notable past achievements/titles/jobs.
Accountant, Registered Nurse, community president.