Enderby challengers step up

Three challengers take on five incumbents for spots on Enderby city council.

The first time she ran for a seat on Enderby City Council, in 2005, Raquel Knust lost by just 11 votes.

She wanted to run again in 2008 but her daughter was facing surgery.

Now, in 2011, Knust is hoping to garner enough votes to represent her community for the next three years.

“I’ve always wanted to run for city council,” said Knust, a long-term care aide. “I grew up in Enderby and it’s something I know I can do.”

Describing herself as a hard-worker with an open mind and lots of patience, Knust is willing to learn what it takes to be a councillor.

“I know I’m green but so was everybody else when they started,” said Knust who, if elected to council, would advocate for a public restroom in the downtown core so people wouldn’t have to use local business’s facilities.

Tundra Baird and Karen Durant are also seeking a seat on council along with the five incumbents.

Baird, like Knust, a mother, who helps with her husband’s concrete business and her father’s café in Ashton Creek, wants to bring what she calls “new energy” to Enderby council.

“Enderby is a city with huge potential for growth and betterment, but there must be initiative taken to make that a reality,” said Baird. “I would like to see road work and infrastructure updates that are comprehensive and realistic.  A sustained, strong development plan to bring new business to Enderby, while supporting the ones we already have, needs to be put in place.”

Baird believes in order for Enderby to grow, changes must be made.

“I believe the time has come for a new generation to help guide the city,” she said. “I believe a council with fresh ideas, outlooks, and enthusiasm is exactly the change Enderby needs.”

Semi-retired and married to her husband for seven years, after having raised a now-married daughter mostly as a single mom, Durant believes a spot on Enderby council would be the right fit for her life today.

“My neighbour said, ‘Karen, Enderby needs a fresh perspective in council and you are the one to give it,’” said Durant. “I am ready for this challenge.”

A 35-year member of various boards involving music, theatre, arts, writing and politics, Durant has a number of items on her Enderby wish list.

“I would like to see more youth engaged in the community or maybe I should say the community more engaged with the youth,” said Durant. “I’d like to see the continuation of the stewardship of our river and the water we drink, the salmon and the bears. And I believe we should be addressing the  aging infrastructure.”