CONTRIBUTION · 25th October 2014
01: Who are you? Tell the public a little about yourself?
Mary Murphy, My family moved to Kitimat in 1955. Blessed with employment which enabled Harry and I, to raise my two beautiful girls ( Gwen/Steve, Alannah/Art)in Kitimat, and in turn my grandchildren(Ethan, Noah, Jordan, Zoe, and Zach). I come from an industrial background, worked at Eurocan 34 years, went through a very difficult mill closure and retired in Kitimat. Proven leadership qualities during the years in Kitimat both on the volunteer front and through employment, always focused on health safety and the environment. I received opportunities on the education front and took full advantage of these opportunities. Love my family, including my four legged family, my community, my home , and have an amazing group of crazy about golf friends. I make mistakes, I fall down, I get up, and I try to fix them.
02: What do you bring to the Council table?
Years of volunteer services throughout my years in the community, at the Kitimat General Hospital, Girl Guides of Canada, Catholic Church Instructing, First Aid Training for four H club, Kitimat volunteer firefighter, Emergency Response, Kitimat Community Supper, Kitimat Hospital Foundation, Extreme Weather Shelter, Kitimat Telethon, Hirsch Creek golf and Winter club. I held all union executive positions, securing the president position for five years. Training through different agencies: NWCC, KVI, Work Safe B.C., Justice Institute, Canadian Labour Council, CAW, CEP, BC Labour Federation, West Fraser Mills, and intense training through District of Kitimat. I was successful at Securing a scholarship for leadership training. Well versed in conflict resolution, negotiations, Health and Safety and environmental assessments. Dedicated to health and safety, responsible for implementation of a asbestos program at my place of employment, along with many environmental and safety improvements. Team player, with determination, to continually strive for improvement. Noted with the Eurocan first aid Team, winning completions which enabled qualifications into world Tournaments, not one but twice. Involved with management to develop policies and procedure to guide the direction of the future, important to this council, to guide, through responsible growth and dealing with any downfalls. Committed to the community by working hard at the council table utilizing the Three years experience on council with the responsibility of many portfolios. Advisory Leisure Services Commission for three years, Kitimat Age Friendly Committee two years, (receiving government recognition for age friendly community), Kitimat Library Board, Family Court, along with alternate on Kitimat and Stikine Regional District, Advisory commission for Persons with Disabilities, Northern Development Trust, Theatre Advisory committee, Kitimat Health Advocacy Group. Continued involvement with the community, Industry and the government at all levels, including acting mayor during the meetings with government at UBCM. I appreciate the opportunity for the added life skills during my years at Eurocan, where combination and responsibility of many jobs and positions, prepared me for the last three years on council.
03: What is your experience with local politics?
My experience with local politics was positive, I was pleased to see none of the previous conflict of local government plastered on the news. We debated, voted and moved on. Council made many changes, lobbied the government to address our needs. Left great impression with groups, industries and governments, received confirming back feed . You have to have the appetite to work with people whether you like them or not, for the betterment of the community, there is no room for personal agendas. Every single person on council played a huge part, worked hard gathering information, attending information sessions, open houses, sharing news, requesting information, were informed and brought different views to the table. Took time away from the family, friends, and personal commitments, to represent, wisely, our community at all government levels. I am proud to have worked with each one.
04: What personal attribute best qualifies you for office and how will you apply it to your role in office?
Honesty, Experience, education, integrity, and dedication, though life experience, through union and management involvement, and through hard work. I bring that to the table to best represent our community. Personal interest in growth, as I want the same opportunities, to be available to our friends, family members, children and grandchildren. There has to be a balance, and I have the ability to realizing working with a group makes things happen. Saying NO closes doors, and leaves no room for involvement. I realize, it’s not going to be perfect, and hard work makes it better. I am driven to served therefore will continue to seek opportunities to make it better, as listed on question 2.
05: How would you improve relationships with Kitimat’ neighbours?
This council did just that, with a amazing staff, improved relationships with our neighbours, Industry and other community agencies, especially the Haisla, and council needs to continue on that path. The focus needs to be “Reconciliation”, acknowledgment, involvement and moving forward with a healing process. I would strive for and promote, Reconciliation, education, needs to take place in our community, so there may be a better understand of the issues. Council involvement is imperative, starting with the education process, attend all training sessions with first nations and other communities at the commencement of the four year term, I would continue with that commitment.
06: If you could bring one commercial business to Kitimat, which business would you bring and why?
I would encourage all businesses to Kitimat (small and large), allow them to follow the appropriate processes to be successful. Continue to bring projects forward for community input, and support that process for added value jobs, support our Economical Development Team as they continue to strive to attract commercial business to Kitimat.
07: If you could do any one thing in your role on Council to make Kitimat more prosperous, what would that be?
Promote Kitimat for what it is, a marvel of nature and industry, open for business on all fronts. Promote Development around the golf course, housing that could be utilized during the summer, easy to leave during several months of the winter. Foster relationships with our neighbours. I would also continue the actions within my control, continue to promote the positive image of Kitimat, its Staff, and Community.
08: If you could do one thing in your role on Council to make Kitimat a better place, what would that be?
Work hard with the council and mayor regardless of who holds that position, towards improvements in all areas. Make tough decision, not always the popular decision, based on public’s perception, and understand the consequences of these decisions. Respect and listen to the public, our staff, and the very important advisory commissions and other important committees who make recommendations to council on issues before the community. Understanding the process, using the resources implemented during the last three years, newsletters, web page, social media, community meetings, televised meetings, and seeking more opportunities for community involvement, is key for community.
09: How would you define your leadership style and how does that style contribute to a more effective Council?
I am a team player, and have different points of view on some issues, voice them and at the end of the day support whatever council has agreed on and champion that decision. I make sure I am informed, and follow the guidelines and rules as set out. I maintain a positive attitude towards our staff and council, and encourage involvement.
10: If there was something you could do to make Kitimat more environmentally friendly what would it be and why?
Environment excellence starts with me, encourage others, and hold people/industries/unions and government accountable. Maintain a score card and continually update and review it. Support projects that address environmental concerns, and strive for improvements, respect the community workhorses who bring the negative environment impacts forward and address their concerns.
11: In 15 words or less: What is the meaning of life?
Life - death, life is a gift, it’s what you do between the two “-“