Jim Black: Love of community led Black to city council campaign

·2 min read

Jim Black hopes his many years of experience on governance boards will convince Hatters he is a strong candidate for a seat on city council.

Black, a former principal from the Brooks School District, has been living in Medicine Hat since 2003. He spent seven years as an elected member of the Palliser Health Board from 2001 until it was dissolved in 2008.

“I was the chair on the finance committee and we had a budget of $335 million and a staff in the thousands, so it was quite a responsibility.”

Black has been a teacher for 47 years and still teaches night school in Bow Island. He believes strongly in volunteerism and stays involved in the community.

“I’m the president of the Medicine Hat Senior Slow Pitch Club. We’ve got quite an organization, there’s about 160 old fellas still living the dream, playing ball. I’m a strong believer in the benefits of recreation and sports for not just good physical health but good mental health,” said Black. “I have a strong interest in maintaining all of our recreational facilities and even perhaps enhancing them as well.”

Black explained some of the main components of his platform.

“I want to make sure we maintain viable and controlled utility system here in the city. I think we’re really unique and that’s something we need to hang on to,” Black said. “As I said earlier, I’m a strong proponent of recreational facilities and maintaining and upgrading those.”

Black wants to understand the city’s governance model.

“My first question that got me going down this road is what is the governance model for the city? Is it a good one? Is it something we should be enhancing, changing?”

Black says being on city council is a job and not a position of privilege.

“An election is basically a job interview, but instead of sitting across the table from five or six people, you’re sitting across the table from thousands of voters,” Black said. “You present yourself as a potential employee and they decide if they want to hire you or not.”

, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News

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