Ken is a lifelong resident of Waterloo Region and has served as Mayor of Woolwich and as Regional chair. First elected Chair in 1985, Ken has been active across the entire Region helping to ensure its continuing success. Preservation of farm and environmentally sensitive lands, a balanced transportation system, child care and social services, a strong cultural community, economic development for jobs, good infrastructure – these are just a part of the work of the Region to continue this Region on its successful path. Ken and his wife Kathryn have 5 children and 8 grandchildren. He has always been guided by the need to be good stewards of what we have while making sure that our children and grandchildren also enjoy the quality of life we have had here in the Region.
Excerpts from Ken’s Better Choices Questionnaire
“Municipal governments are key to building sustainable communities. Encouraging investment and job opportunities is done by creating good infrastructure, both physical and human, which encourages investment, supports entrepreneurial activity, shows a concern for the broader community, and which provides a good community framework. Pipes, roads, water supply and other hard services are important but how a community builds itself around human services and cultural amenities also make it attractive to employers and employees.”
“Waterloo Region has many jobs dependent on our ability to sell goods and services to other parts of the country and abroad. We respect Canadian content rules where they are required or allowed but we must also be careful not to see our local people disadvantaged by retaliatory actions. Our sole sourcing of the ION LRT cars in Canada with Metrolinx ensured that jobs were kept in Canada.”
“My vision of the community has been very clear for many years. I initiated the movement to stop urban sprawl in 2000 which led to the LRT and the plans to intensify cores, save rural and environmentally sensitive lands, and allow alternatives to the growing use of automobiles. Active transportation has become a regular ongoing area of study and work. Improvements to sewage treatment are improving our rivers while water conservation is making us more and more sustainable with local resources. At the same time as preserving farmland, we have actively encouraged local markets and food production so that local food is more readily available and providing support for local food producers. We have over the past few years given greater support to the arts community while trying to maintain and build the social safety supports so important to our community.”