Kawalilak to run for council spot

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With nominations closed for St. Albert city council, a new candidate has emerged.

Shayne Kawalilak, 47, filed his papers Monday to run for one of six seats on city council.

A father of nine who has lived in St. Albert for more than 20 years, Kawalilak resides in Sturgeon and says he made the snap decision to put his name in for council Sunday night.

Kawalilak’s first foray into politics comes with some reluctance, but he says dissatisfaction with the current list of nominees led him to file his papers.

“I felt like I had to,” he said.

Kawalilak is the owner of an IT business and has been a volunteer with the 12th St. Albert Scouts for years.

If elected, he wants to see the future council abandon partisan politics and work together as a cohesive unit. As a self-described “professional geek,” he also wants to bring his perspective and experience to the council table.

In particular, one lesson he’d like to share is to always find ways to learn from people – an exercise that can help to build unified teams.

“Council is one team – or it’s supposed to be,” he said.

He wants to see city council look into ways it can increase its transparency and better engage residents.

“I’d like ways for council to educate the public on what they’re doing,” he said.

He also hopes to preserve St. Albert’s family-oriented focus.

“There are so many amazing things in this city. If there’s anything I can do as a councillor to help make families feel like this is a home, I’ll do that,” he said.

Kawalilak is one of 25 people running for six spots on council. Other candidates include Sandyne Beach-McCutcheon, Allan Bohachyk, Wes Brodhead, Jan Butler, Craig Cameron, Gilbert Cantin, Mark Cassidy, Jacy Eberlein, Jacquie Hansen, Sheena Hughes, Charlene Jelinski, Natalie Joly, Mark Kay, Ken MacKay, Nestor Petriw, Ufuoma Odebala-Fregene, Hannes Rudolph, Bob Russell, Steve Stone, Tash Taylor, Jaye Walter, Ray Watkins, Leonard Wilkins and Barry Zukewich.

Cathy Heron, Cam MacKay and Malcolm Parker are running for mayor.

The election will be held Oct. 16.

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