Lori Ackerman unchallenged for Fort St. John mayor; 13 file for council

Fort St. John won't see a race for mayor this election season, but residents have plenty of options when it comes to choosing the rest of city council on October 20.

Lori Ackerman was the only candidate to file for mayor by the time nominations closed at 4 p.m. on Friday, and will likely be acclaimed to the position for the second term in a row.

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Anyone can challenge a candidate's nomination by 4 p.m. on Sept. 18, although Chief Election Officer Janet Prestley says, "that would be pretty rare."

Ackerman was first elected mayor in 2011, edging out Don Irwin for the seat by 60 votes. She was acclaimed for a second term in 2014, with no other candidates running for mayor. Ackerman was first elected to council in 2005.

If Ackerman's nomination stands, it'll be the first time in 28 years that a Fort St. John mayor has been acclaimed two terms in a row.

Steve Thorlakson was acclaimed in 1996 after he was first elected mayor in 1990 and again in 1993. Ackerman was acclaimed in 2014.

Meanwhile, all incumbent councillors have filed to run for another term. That list includes Larry Evans, Gord Klassen, Byron Stewart, Bruce Christensen, Lilia Hansen, and Trevor Bolin.

They are being challenged by Becky Grimsrud, Tony Zabinsky, Justin Jones, Chuck Fowler, Jim Harris, Denise Menard, and Gabor Haris.

Candidates can still withdraw from the race — their deadline to do so is Sept. 21 at 4 p.m.

Election day is Oct. 20, with advanced voting on Oct. 10 and 17 at the legion.

Key dates for voters:

Sept. 19 — Last day to meet 30-day jurisdiction residency / property ownership requirement for registering on general voting day, Oct. 20.

Oct. 10 — Required advance voting opportunity, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Fort St. John Legion

Oct. 17 — Required advance voting opportunity, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Fort St. John Legion

Oct. 18 — Special Voting Opportunities at Senior Care Facilities and Hospital

Oct. 20 — General voting day; 8 am to 8 pm at the Fort St. John Legion

Nov. 5 — Inaugural Council meeting at 5:30 pm with Oath of Office

See below for a list of candidates.

Mayor

• Lori Ackerman

loriackerman
Lori Ackerman.

Ackerman is seeking her third term as mayor. She was first elected to the position in 2011, edging out Don Irwin for the seat by 60 votes. She was acclaimed for a second term in 2014, with no other candidates running for mayor. Ackerman was first elected to council in 2005.

View her nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Ackerman on Facebook at facebook.com/loriackerman.ca or Twitter @lori_ackerman.

Ackerman can be reached by phone at 250-787-8458 or 250-787-3956, or by email at lorilynn@telus.net.

Council

• Becky Grimsrud

beckygrimsrud
Becky Grimsrud.

Grimsrud, a helicopter pilot active with the Kin Club and the local rec scene, marks her third run for council after campaigns in 2014 and the 2017 byelection.

View her nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Grimsrud on Facebook at facebook.com/beckygrimsrudFSJ.

Grimsrud can be reached by phone at 250-262-1600, or by email at beckygutteridge@gmail.com.

• Larry Evans

larryevans
Larry Evans.

Evans, a former fire chief for the city now retired, plans to seek a fifth term after first being elected in 2005.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Evans on Facebook at facebook.com/larry.evans.39794.

Evans can be reached by phone at 250-785-2416 or 250-263-5067, or by email at ljfevans@shaw.ca.

• Gord Klassen

gordklassen
Gord Klassen.

Klassen, a former pastor, plans to seek a third term after first being elected in 2011.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Klassen on Facebook at facebook.com/FSJCouncillorGordKlassen, Twitter @gordklassen, or by visiting gordklassen.ca.

Klassen can be reached via phone at 250-787-1750, or via email at gord@gordklassen.ca.

• Byron Stewart

byronstewart
Byron Stewart.

Stewart plans to seek a third term after first being elected in 2011.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Stewart on Facebook at facebook.com/ByronStewartCouncillorCityOfFortStJohn, Twitter @ByronStewartFSJ.

Stewart can be reached via phone at 250-793-5923, or via email at bpstew@telus.net.

• Bruce Christensen

brucechristensen
Bruce Christensen.

Christensen plans to to seek a fifth term after first being elected in a byelection 2006.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Christensen on Facebook at facebook.com/Bruce-Christensen-Councillor-City-of-Fort-St-John-788721854523495.

Christensen can be reached via phone at 250-787-2202, or via email at pdg5370@telus.net.

• Lilia Hansen

liliahansen
Lilia Hansen.

Hansen is executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, and plans to seek a second term after first being elected in a byelection in 2017. 

View her nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Hansen on Facebook at facebook.com/liliaforfsjcouncil.

Hansen can be reached by phone at 250-261-3148, or by email at liliahansen@shaw.ca.

• Tony Zabinsky

tony
Tony Zabinsky.

Zabinsky is retiring from his banking career this fall, and is past president and current treasurer of the Fort St. John Chamber of Commerce.

View his nominations papers by clicking here.

Connect with Zabinsky on Facebook at facebook.com/tonyzabinskycitycouncil.

Zabinsky can be reached by phone at 250-787-7202, or by email at tony@zabinsky.ca.

• Justin Jones

justinjones-fsj
Justin Jones.

Jones is a sales rep with United Rentals of Canada, and a new entrant to the city's political scene. He joins Grimsrud, Zabinsky, Fowler, and Harris as the only non-incumbents to file.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Jones on Facebook at facebook.com/justinjonesFSJ.

Jones can be reached by phone at 778-256-2559, or by email at jjonescampaignteam@gmail.com.

• Chuck Fowler

chuckfowler-fortstjohn
Chuck Fowler.

Fowler, an employee with Peace Country Filtration, is another new entrant to this year's race. He's been active behind the scenes politically, particulary with local oil and gas advocacy group Fort St. John For LNG, and helped campaign for MLA Dan Davies in the 2017 provincial election.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Fowler on Facebook at facebook.com/ChuckforFSJCouncil.

Fowler can be reached by phone at 250-794-6012, or by email at chuckfowler3772@gmail.com.

• Trevor Bolin

trevorbolin-fsj
Trevor Bolin.

Bolin, a real estate developer, plans to seek a fourth term after being elected in 2008.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Connect with Bolin on Facebook at facebook.com/therealtrevfsj.

Bolin can be reached by phone at 250-262-7334, or by email at tbolin@me.com.

• Jim Harris.

jimharris-fsj
Jim Harris.

Harris is manager at Hi-Performance Motor Sports and another new entrant to the civic scene.

View his nominations papers by clicking here.

Harris can be reached by phone at 250-262-6916, or by email at aspfire@yahoo.com.

• Denise Menard

denisemenard-fsj
Denise Menard.

Menard is an office assistant with the Metis Society.

View her nomination papers by clicking here.

 Menard can be reached by phone at 250-793-0425 and by email at dmenard1234@gmail.com.

• Gabor Haris.

gaborharris-fsj
Gabor Haris.

View his nomination papers by clicking here.

Haris can be reached by phone at 778-896-4067 or by email at gablifelearning@gmail.com.

Election day is Oct. 20, with advanced voting on Oct. 10 and 17.

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.

© Copyright 2018 Alaska Highway News

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