Volunteer profile: Anna Beard | Communications Expert

It's hard to expect constituents to understand why you're running and the value you offer them if you can't get those key messages pared down and sent out. Luckily, that's where our communications expert, Anna comes in.

 

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Anna Beard

Communications Expert

Volunteer Name: Anna Beard
Role: Communications Expert

Why did you decide to get involved in a municipal election campaign?
I've been trying to volunteer in the municipal space more and more each year since 2011. Every time an election rolls around, I try and jump in with both feet as quickly as possible. Not only is it a great way to get to know prospective city and regional leaders, it's a great way to meet new people! Plus, it's good experience if I ever decide to run for elected office in the future.

Why do you think Jen will make a great councillor?
In the few months that Jen and I have been working together, she's shown she'll be an amazing elected official. I could sit here and say how brilliant she is or how she's genuinely interested in helping people, but I think the biggest thing that stands out to me is how she'll be a great role model for young women who have constantly heard the narrative that it's too difficult to have a family, and work, and go to school, and be involved in politics. I'm excited to watch Jen poke holes in that story and create a new norm.

What is your favourite thing about the City of Waterloo?
Definitely the food scene. Kitchener runs a really, really close second thanks to Belmont Village, but between Harmony Lunch, Princess Cafe, White Rabbit, Jane Bond, Loloan Lobby Bar, and Taco Farm, it's hard to beat that. Also - have you been to Pin-up Arcade Bar?!

What do you think is the biggest issue residents in the City of Waterloo are dealing with?
Balance and meeting each other half way. We need to find a balance between protecting the vulnerable and enjoying the amenities of a prosperous city, between active transportation, transit, and single occupancy vehicles, between single family homes and multi-unit development, between new students and long-term residents. It's easy to be the squeaky wheel but when we're only concerned with our own needs and preferences, people get left behind.

Why should residents care about municipal elections?
For the same reason they care about how long it takes for a fire truck to arrive at a scene, how safe they feel when they ride their bike or walk their kids to school, how often they'll have to get their car's alignment fixed because of a giant pothole on the road, and what active programming is offered at their local community centres. The decisions that impact our daily lives are made by our neighbours at the municipal level. Municipal politics are less divisive and more about finding solutions. So, if you're disillusioned about elections (as it's so easy to be), try learning more about what's happening at the municipal level. You may find a whole new passion for politics. 

Jen Vasic