The next city council could be asked to return fluoride to the city’s water supply. What is your position on this?
I am personally a pro-fluoride citizen. After the plebiscite, Yes or No, I will follow the majority mandate of my constituents in Ward 7.
Wildrose Party Secretary, Volunteer Coordinator TRS Council
What is your motivation for seeking a seat on city council?
Service, leadership, and a commitment to do what is right. I am all-in for Calgarians. I made the decision to run so we can shape our future in a way that we can all be proud of. Now is the time to reinvigorate council, and put plans into action to achieve results. I will respect what others are saying and find common ground to negotiate a path forward. As a small business owner and Operations Manager, I know what it takes to plan, budget, make tough decisions and pivot when necessary.
Describe your leadership style:
I am a highly adaptable, creative, and results driven leader. I am open minded, logical and use critical thinking to execute my vision and ideas. I will build strong networks and relationships that respect trust and understanding. I know how to ask tough questions, engage with stakeholders and communities to find the data, and make the best decision based on that tangible information. Engaging with people is what I have always done best, and engagement through a lens of service is what I bring to the table.
What do you consider the single most important issue facing Calgarians, and what should be done about it?
I believe the single most important issue facing Calgarians is Economic Recovery. Calgary has always been an economic engine for Canada, but our core need is to evolve, and one way we can diversify and transform our economy is Calgary’s creative economy. There is an opportunity I hope to achieve with the help of the community for Calgary to recognize itself as a centre for culture and creativity.
What are the three most important issues in your ward, and how would you address them?
Community Building – If we can build inclusive, strategic, interdependent communities that connect people to the basic needs on the neighbourhood level, then it becomes a much easier concept to materialize on the city building level.
Civic Engagement – I think one of the most important responsibilities of the next council will be how we listen to our constituents.
Infrastructure – I would like to see more investment into inner city infrastructure, specifically the efficiency and safety of our roads, bridges, and pathways.
Do you support the city’s downtown revitalization strategy? Where should funding and programs be focused?
I am in full support of our downtown revitalization strategy. funding should be focused on building a strong sense of community, where arts and culture are embraced and we can build an economy where the promise of Calgary’s prosperity is for available for everyone to achieve.
What innovative project or job creation measure can you propose to aid Calgary’s post-COVID economic recovery?
Support for Calgary based start-ups like Sunspring Farms who combine production and consumption by integrating hydroponic vertical farms with Calgary affordable housing developments to grow safe, fresh, and healthy produce, while employing sustainable business practices and underserved populations. Its projects like these that can change our social landscape while diversifying our economy.
What should city council do to keep young adults from leaving Calgary?
First, we need to listen to young adults, include them in the conversation about where our city is headed, and what kind of future they want to be a part of. Then, we need to work with our educational institutions to make sure those who study here, stay here. We need to have funding and supports ready for the next generation of entrepreneurs here in Calgary.
* All candidate Q&As have been edited for clarity and brevity.
*Original article online at https://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/derek-williams-ward-7-calgary-council-candidate-questionnaire