For Maple Ridge trustee
• Name: Nina Fowell
• Residence: 216th Street, Maple Ridge.
• Occupation/education: Retired teacher, small business owner; BA, masters in education, special education diploma, diploma in family therapy.
• Volunteer work: former director on Cythera Transition House Society board, member of citizens advisory board.
Question: Please provide an example of what you have done that qualifies you for school board.
Answer: I have been an educator for more than 30 years. I have taught everything from preschool to university (UBC). Most of my 25 years in Maple Ridge have been at Yennadon elementary (Grade 7 for 15 years) and Thomas Haney secondary (English/social studies and communications, Grades 11/12). I now own a growing, successful business in Maple Ridge, going on seven years. I am a positive person who looks for solutions. I am a cancer survivor and have done fund raising for the cancer society with my 2010 Bald and Beautiful calendar.
Q: Why are you running for trustee?
A: I believe our public education system is in trouble because of poor government support. I have years of experience and education that would make me an excellent trustee. I can make important decisions concerning our students, staff and parent needs. I am not intimidated by government.
Q: What makes you stand out from other candidates?
A: I am an educator, business owner, parent, taxpayer, community supporter, supporter of children/youth organizations (Pathfinders, dry grads, Rotary Club charity tournament). I have expressed support and concern publicly through letters to the editor (topics: education, false alarm policy for businesses, frequent break-ins and vandalism downtown.).
Q: How do you see the school district changing in the next 10 years?
A: I don’t see anything changing, which is the problem.
Q: What will be your top priority if elected to school board?
A: Encouraging people to vote (I find it disappointing that only 25 per cent voted, as I believe that if you want a say about how things are done, voting is a way to be heard); proper funding to produce the exceptional education system our government likes to brag about around the world (unfortunately, it has been watered down/stripped of resources, and our fabulous staff are burning out); we need a new format for bargaining as we are presently funding a system that has not worked since it was created (I do not believe that the employer group is really representative of our school trustees).