With several pivotal issues on voters’ minds, Rick Lavin aims to bring new ideas and a strong voice to the Vernon council table, and, as well, harness his experience in law enforcement to help make Vernon a safe, vibrant community for years to come.
The former RCMP officer and interim executive director of Vernon’s Upper Room Mission launched his candidacy for a seat on Vernon council at the Schubert Centre.
“Over the years, in various capacities, I’ve been directly involved with many of the key issues facing our community —including what’s happening downtown with our street-entrenched population and the impact on businesses community services — and I want to use my background and leadership to help Vernon move forward,” said Lavin.
During his 30-year-career with the RCMP, Lavin rose through the ranks to become an Inspector and then Officer in Charge of Professional Standards for British Columbia, one of the RCMP’s most senior posts. He retired from the RCMP and left the Lower Mainland for Vernon in 2011. A few years later, looking for a way to use his skills, expertise and passion to give back, Lavin became the executive director of the Upper Room Mission.
Lavin, who was recently invited to sit on Vernon’s Activate Safety Task Force, said those roles have given him unique insight and ideas on how to approach safety downtown in ways that are simple, affordable and effective.
“I’d like to help develop a long-term strategy that’s really going to see our dollars generate positive outcomes that benefit everyone for years to come,” he said. “We don’t have to spend a lot; we just have to know where we can make ripples.”
In addition to having an ear to the ground, Lavin’s professional background has influenced his approach to balanced and evidence-based decision-making. If honoured with the responsibility to be elected to city council, Lavin would be representing the people of Vernon objectively.
“I know how important it is to listen to people and make decisions that are in the best interest of Vernon, and I measure every action by my core values: honesty, integrity, compassion and respect,” he said.