An endorsement from Joel Solomon for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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“I am happy to endorse Brent Granby’s nomination with Vision Vancouver nomination to the Park Board.

In order to achieve an ecologically sustainable future, we have to arrive at a shared consensus that action is needed. All sectors of civil society from academics, decision makers, business, food producers to residents need to understand and support the importance of the steps that will need to be taken to move to low-carbon economy and culture.

I have been aware of Brent Granby’s advocacy for a while as it relates to these issues. His efforts to use his blog and social media tools demonstrate his commitment to create dialogue on sustainability issues. Building understanding at the community level is a critical mission of sustainability. Through Brent’s efforts with the West End Residents Association and other advocacy work, he is playing a key role in building that consensus that is critical for a sustainable future for everyone.”

Joel Solomon

An endorsement for MLA David Eby for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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I have worked with Brent for many years in Vancouver, and know him as someone passionate about the continuing need to prioritize fair treatment for everyone and environmental values in all levels of government policy.

My time working with Brent has convinced me that he would be a wonderful Park Board commissioner. He’s thoughtful, committed and community-minded – he’d make a great contribution to our city.

An Endorsement from Cl. Kerry Jang for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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I am delighted to support Brent Granby’s nomination for the Park Board.  I have known Brent for over a decade as a dedicated community activist who has supported progressive change on how communities talk with City Hall to create a more accessible, green and livable city.   He’s worked tirelessly in his own neighbourhood to promote an active lifestyle.  Brent’s positive advocacy is well respected throughout Vancouver and we need him as part of our team on Parks Board.

An endorsement from VSB Trustee Rob Wynen for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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I first met Brent in 2002 as President of the West End Residents Association (WERA) when he was a volunteer on the Mole Hill Community Garden. This project was the first community garden in the West End and was completed with donated materials and volunteer labour. Brent was one of the volunteers on the team that made this project the wonderful success that it is today.

I later recruited Brent To WERA where he was to be come a director of that organization. Brent immediately made an impact by initiating a community-based art project by applying for grants from the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Foundation. The project “Look” by artist, Nicole May and other residents who participated is still in the Mole Hill Laneway and in a public art register of Vancouver. Projects like this provided West End residents an opportunity to connect while contributing to great place making.

Brent with myself and other WERA directors tirelessly advocated for more sustainable transportation infrastructure in Vancouver. In particular WERA was successful in advocating for bike lanes on the Burrard Bridge. WERA has established a reputation of being a positive, responsible and effective force in Vancouver’s civic affairs and Brent has made a significant contribution in developing this model.

When I resigned as WERA president, I was glad to know that Brent had taken over as President. Brent has shown creativity and strong organizational skills in his leadership role with WERA. He has demonstrated a unique understanding of community organizing that uses both traditional methods of resident engagement tools, but also has shown an ability to adapt and innovate with use of new tools as web based communications and social media.

With no hesitation and with great pleasure I recommend Brent for a nomination for the Vancouver Park Board. His sincere interest and many years of experience with Park Board issues as a community based organizer, with political parties and as an activist in the city make him an outstanding candidate. This experience will well serve Vancouver to be a more liveable and sustainable city for everyone

 

 

An endorsement from Cheeying Ho for Brent Granby on the Park Board

CheeyingWRFrom Cheeying Ho, Sustainability professional:

“I have known Brent Granby for eight years, professionally and personally. Brent has always been a passionate and devoted advocate for civic engagement, particularly on issues pertaining to parks and public spaces. I’ve been greatly impressed with his energy and commitment to be involved in civic affairs. He is a good listener, very approachable, and able to respect a range of viewpoints. Brent has an inquisitive mind and is always seeking ways to make communities more livable and sustainable. Solving sustainability issues takes a commitment to working in partnership with others and understanding shared values; Brent has proven his commitment to collaborating with diverse people and groups in many different situations. I know that Brent is considered a leader in his community with integrity and strong organizational skills.

Vancouver’s challenge to reduce its impact on climate change while creating greener and more vibrant neighbourhoods will require consistent policy development and vision. I am confident that Brent has the vision and commitment to know what needs to be done and the character to ensure that sustainability will always be a priority of local government.”

An endorsement from School Board Trustee Allan Wong for Brent Granby on the Park Board

allanWongHSWRFrom Vancouver School Board Trustee Allan Wong

“I have known Brent Granby for many years and am inspired by his leadership style and his sense of responsibility to the community. Brent has consistently acted with the upmost integrity and respect for others and is able to work cooperatively in diverse groups. He is a consensus builder and an advocate for public education and community accessibility for all.

I remember Brent’s tremendous role in quickly seeking a community-based solution to transport students in the West End to the District French Immersion program in Kitsilano. Brent went straight into a problem solving mode and came up with a local solution of car pooling and later a walking school bus using public transportation.

 

Brent has spent over a decade involved in many issues pertaining to the Park Board. If there is anything I need to understand about the Parks Board I feel confident seeking Brent’s description and his personal balanced views as well. I hope that his experience and perspective is given the opportunity to serve the Park Board in order to guide staff and the board to a more liveable and sustainable Vancouver. I sincerely encourage and support Brent’s nomination and look forward to him being a commissioner for Vancouver this November.”

An endorsement from MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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From Spencer Chandra Herbert, MLA Vancouver West End:

“Brent Granby’s demonstrated committment to a healthy environment, truly accessible community public services, and creative citizen engagement in bettering our communities makes him stand out as a candidate for the Park Board.  Brent is a hands on kind of guy, who knows what it takes to make change in our communities, and he has delivered.  Whether it’s a new washroom, better biking facilities, community gardens, or art in the Parks, Brent has already made a difference.  I hope he gets the chance to make even more of a difference as a Park Commissioner, and with your vote he will.   I’m proud to endorse Brent Granby. “

An endorsement from Loretta Woodcock for Brent Granby on the Park Board

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From 3 term Park Board Commissioner Loretta Woodcock

“Although Brent has been volunteering his time and energy for over a decade in advocating for the best use of our public spaces, I had the fortune of working with Brent during my final term as commissioner on the Park Board from 2008-2011. Brent knows this City well. He brings a focused and infatiguable passion in promoting recreational amenities for families, cyclists, nature enthusiasts, community gardeners, the arts community, sports field users, and those who rely on our community centres. When you meet Brent you will be impressed by his hard work ethic and the sincerity that he brings in representing your interests on the Park Board. Vancouverites can have confidence that when they elect Brent Granby, they will have someone with a thorough knowledge and readiness to perform his duties in a principled and positive way. Join me in supporting Brent’s candidacy for Park Board.”

The healthy city: good design, beauty and throw in some fun.

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The actual physical fabric of the city could make you healthy. How wide sidewalks are, is there street furniture, do you have parks with nature, community gardens and interesting places all have an effect on our health. There is a growing body of knowledge that is making a connection between a city’s infrastructure and health. The most obvious example is bike lanes. By increasing safe bike lanes cities will increase the amount of people who will cycle. Riding bikes and living physical active lives helps prevent a host of chronic diseases. But there is a whole range of things that cities could be doing to make its residents healthier.

I think great public space is something that is often over looked as a factor in health. Great public spaces from interesting material for the sidewalks and pocket parks really invites folks to walk. Having street furniture and poster kiosks also encourages people to linger and make social connections and this all good and promotes health. Good design and beauty could be key components of health.

The City is seeking ideas for making Vancouver healthier for everyone. The city is launching a number of engagement tools to gather ideas including a series of “ideas labs” to “brainstorm” input to inform its The Healthy City Strategy.

 The idea labs will be held on the following dates:

Monday, May 5, 2014 from 6:30 – 9pm at Trout Lake Community Centre, 3360          Victoria Drive

 Saturday, May 10, 2014 from 1 – 3:30 pm at Vancouver Public Library Central Branch, 350 West  Georgia Street

Thursday, May 15, 2014 from 6:30 – 9 pm at Ryerson United Church, 2195 West 45th Avenue

To learn more about the Health City Strategy select here
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Throw back Thursday: 1982 when we had student grants, loans and good paying jobs

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Ouch!  It’s 30 years since I started university. This is me in 1982 in my first year at Mac. I was 20 years old here. An exciting time and I was proud to be going to post secondary education. I really didn’t have a glue what I wanted to do, but always some how knew that I would go to university.

What strikes me now  is how lucky I was to be going to school at the time when  I did. Governments were still supporting universities so tuition was affordable. Both the Federal  and Ontario Governments had grant and loan programs. In Hamilton there was still good paying manufacturing jobs to be had in the summer where one could earn enough for the following year.

These were the last years when Pierre Trudeau was Prime Minister and government was addressing inequality and was helping with programs to develop a more equable society. I finished school with debt, but nothing like the amount that students have know. Looking back being the son of  an auto worker I feels so enriched to have had the opportunity to go university.