Craig Speirs – Candidate for Mayor of Maple Ridge

By September 24, 2018General

I was born and raised in New Westminster and then moved with my family to Maple Ridge in 1973. We quickly became part of the community and that fall I started at the Liquor Store where I worked for 34 years. I am constantly reminded of the quality of life a person can enjoy when you can live, work, play and raise a family within this community. I am always looking for opportunities to create local employment so others can enjoy that synergy.

My wife Diane and I have raised two children in this community, Rory 32 and Adlayna 28 who both live and work here. Diane is a wonderful artist involved with the arts community as President of the Garibaldi Arts Club and both of us have been part of the Arts Studio Tour. I believe that the arts reflect the health of a community and in my opinion this community is healthy.

I have many passions including, photography, art, music, local food, wine knowledge and am an avid gardener. I am also very proud to have lent my time and passion to a number of volunteer positions including:

  • 5 years as chair of the Maple Ridge committee raising funds, fun and awareness for B.C.’s Children’s Hospital. Our signature event was the Teddy Bear Tea and Clinic
  • 6 years as a director of the Ridge Meadows Recycling Society
  • 4 years on the board of directors for the Fraser Information society C.E.E.D. center as vice-chair, a social and environmental advocacy group
  • 13 years as a member of Compassionate Friends a self-help group for bereaved parents, the last 6 as leader.
  • 3 years on the Community Heritage Commission, 2 as chair.
  • 3 years on the Haney Farmers Market as vice-chair
  • 2 years on MR Agricultural Committee as HFM liaison

I’ve learned that a group of citizens working together for a common cause can create an incredibly positive effect. If the arts reflect the health of a community volunteerism reflects the heart and in my experience this community has a very large healthy heart.

Council liaison duties:

  • MR Heritage Commission
  • MR Agricultural Committee
  • UBC Malcom Knapp Research Forest
  • Municipal Advisory Committee on Accessibility and Inclusiveness (Joint committee with Pitt Meadows)
  • Alternate with a variety of other committees

Director positions currently held:

  • Director with the Metro Utilities Committee
  • Director with the Pitt Meadows Airport Society
  • Director with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Homelessness has been an ongoing problem in this community with passionate people taking strong positions on both sides of the debate. In my view we will never have peace until we have solutions that fit the needs of the homeless and make our city safer. We need to come together to create those solutions and as soon as possible.

Our community is over half way through its growth cycle. We are 85,000 at the moment and have planned to top out at 130,000 so we have to decide what we are going to end up like. The challenge to every Council going forward is to build our essential infrastructure without excessive tax increases. We will need to build fire halls, police sub-stations, quality water and sewerage, transportation connections, recreational facilities and cultural facilities.

There are many other issues that I won’t expand on here so feel free to contact me.