The ward 3 situation: five prospective candidates will split the vote and keep the incumbent in office.

council 100x100By Pepper Parr

February 24th, 2018



Steven White

Stephen White

Steven White, a ward 5 resident, stood at the ECoB Candidate Workshop Thursday evening and asked if some time could be found for the prospective candidates in the different wards to get together and work through their differences.

White said that the prospective candidates could look at their individual strengths and determine which candidate had the best chance of taking the council seat away from the incumbent.

Ward 3 is one of those classic situations where there are, at this point in time, five prospective candidates plus John Taylor the incumbent.

Two of the five, ran in the 2014 election. Lisa Cooper is in the race for the third or fourth time and has some name recognition; not much more than that. However she did take almost 26% of the vote.

Jeff Brooks was in the race for the first time in 2014. He never fully understood just what the job was but he did take 15% of the vote.

rory shot

Rory Nisan

Gareth Williams

Gareth Williams

The other three are all young. Two, Rory Nisan and Gareth Williams would make good members of Council.

Both have accomplished much at this point in their lives.


Mike Quackenbush

The third Quackenbush is likeable enough but probably not up to the rigorous demands of a city councillor.

John Taylor, the incumbent has served the city well for the more than 25 years he has been a member of Council. He is the Dean of a city council that has frequently treated Taylor rather shabbily. The ravages of time have caught up with Taylor and there are parts of the job he is no longer able to do.

Actors, politicians and the sports community look for that time when they are at the top of their game and find an opportunity to leave the stage. There is an opportunity for Taylor to look at the five prospective candidates and sign the nomination papers for one of them and then work closely with that person during their first two years on office.

The room at the Tansley Woods Community Centre was made up of people who wanted to get elected along with their supporters and those who had been elected and believed change was needed at city hall; they had the experience to tell prospective candidates what they had to do to win. The message was simple – get out there and knock on doors, identify your support and the get out the vote on Election Day.

Other than talking amongst their supporters we doubt that any of the candidates have been out on the streets of their community knocking on doors and looking for support.

Carr - Leblovic - Thoem

Mark Carr, Diane Leblovic and Peter Thoem had some solid advice for prospective candidates. Were they listened to?

During the two hour ECoB sponsored Candidate Workshop seasoned and weathered politicians Mark Carr andDiane Leblovic laid it out pretty clearly – determine which of the prospective candidates has the best chance of winning and put your energy behind that candidate.

Peter Thoem, a one term member of council for ward 2, explained to prospective candidates that the job is a lot harder than they imagine. “The number of reports you will be given are complex and you don’t have anywhere near the time to read and absorb the documents, form an opinion and get input from the people you represent” he said.

Kearns direct smile

Lisa Kearns

Lisa Kearns, part of the ECoB leadership team, told the prospective candidates that one of the things they could do as members of council was change the way information gets to them.

Narrowing the field in ward 3 to a single candidate who can take on the incumbent will call for a selfless act on the part of four of the five names out there now. It takes depth of character and the strength to put the community before oneself.

Related news story:

Who got the votes in the 2014 election.

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9 comments to The ward 3 situation: five prospective candidates will split the vote and keep the incumbent in office.

  • Eric

    In the times I have met Rory Nisan, he has impressed me with his passion and dedication to bettering the community. We need fresh perspectives at city council and Rory is the perfect person for this. He is very involved in Burlington and has 10 years of experience in public policy. My vote will definitely go to him.

  • Bethany

    While Rory’s political resume is thick, I doubt he’d settle his career prospects into committing beyond his election term. I’m concerned this is only a lily pad for him and he will be gone. Serving larger governments or commuting to an international stage. I would like to elect someone who is rooted here and had been active in the community. I don’t agree with this article about Mike. I’ve met him at meetings. He’s been researching dedicating his time training and getting to know this ward on his personal time attending all these meetings voluntarily. He knows what’s happening in this city. He’s already been engaging in person and online for over a year. Mike has a dedication and I believe he actually wants to serve Burlington and would see it through a life career if we would have him.

    John, if you feel done, please back Mike.

  • Jeff Brooks

    Thanks for the interesting take on our forgotten Ward 3.
    Time will tell who actually enters the race in May.
    The great residents of our ward will have their say on October 22nd.

    Sincerely Jeff Brooks
    Resident Ward 3 , past candidate for Concillor 2014

  • Sabrina Yott

    Rory has done some amazing work for the City over the past years!

    – I loved how he united the diversity that Burlington has to offer with his OneBurlington festival which was created last year in response to the Quebec Mosque shooting. It was fantastic to see so many different cultures, religions and FOOD in one place! Truly amazing.
    – Rory is also a dedicated member of the City’s Mundialization committee and helps extensively with the United Nations committtee too which puts on awareness events each year

    Rory has the energy, spirit, loyalty and ideas of a fantastic candidate.

    He’s got my vote!!

  • Ed

    I like Rory’s proposals. Ward 3 deserves better representation, we need change.

  • Sharon

    My vote will be going to Rory. It’s time we have representation at City Council and the Halton District School Board that will listen to the people that put them in the seat. Depending on my decision, I will actively help Rory with his campaign.
    Just like it’s time to change the Provincial Government it is also time to change the City of Burlington.

  • George

    I have had the pleasure of observing Mr. Rory Nisan in his excellent presentations made to the HDSB Trustees on behalf of the parents, community and students at Lester B Pearson high school. His presentations were thoughtful and well presented in a calm business like manner.

    I also remember Mr. Nisan’s article that effectively challenged the poorly thought out and foolish statements of Ms. Andrea Grebenc’s (a HDSB Trustee) article explaining her reasoning for the closing her alma mater “Lester B Pearson High School.

    Burlington needs concerned people like Mr. Rory Nisan to properly represent the citizens of Burlington in the future. Mr. Rory Nisan may be young appearing but he is immensely competent and qualified to become a city councillor.

    Mr. Nisan always presents himself well and dresses appropriately during his presentations and delegations. It is not only important to be smart but to look smart and Rory Nisan certainly does that at all times I have seen him.

    I recommend the citizens of Ward 3 strongly consider this excellent candidate for their city Councillor. I know he will serve them and the city of Burlington in excellent fashion.

  • Jonathan

    Rory has taken an active role within our community, he is driven and focused on driving change. His experience and willingness will do well for our city. My vote will be Rory Nisan.

  • William

    If Taylor ran again, he’s win – and Burlington would be poorer for it. We need fresh perspectives at city hall.

    Rory Nisan is the strongest of the new generation. His active participation in the school closures and Official Plan reveals his willingness to get involved and change the status quo to make a genuinely better city.

    Gareth Williams embraces the city hall agenda, without offering anything different or better – apart from his personally virtuous efforts on electric vehicles. Gareth twitter feed suggests he’s in Goldring’s camp – which will alienate many who think the city is headed in the wrong direction.