October 20, 2018

Winnipeg
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Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry

With longtime Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry councillor Jenny Gerbasi deciding not to run again, the field is wide open with seven candidates.

First-time city council candidate and longtime school trustee Sherri Rollins is running to replace Gerbasi. So is promotions company owner Stephanie Meilleur, who’s served as Osborne BIZ executive director.

Peter Koroma is an anti-poverty activist and public servant who wants to address the issue of homelessness and speed up expanded bus rapid transit to all four points of Winnipeg.

Harry Wolbert is an anti-poverty and disability-services advocate who chairs the Winnipeg Transit Riders Association.

Michael Thompson works for Kiwi Installations and is regular volunteer with the Ironman Outdoor Curling Bonspiel.

Bryanna Spina owns Prairie Roots Yoga and is an Early Grey Community Centre volunteer.

Jeff Palmer is a professional city planner who lives and volunteers in the ward.

The Free Press invited all council and mayoral candidates to fill out a questionnaire about themselves, their platforms and what they hope to achieve in office. Read their responses below.

Candidates

Harry Wolbert

I grew up in Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry. As a child, I went to school at Lord Roberts. My father had a convenience store in the Osborne Village until his retirement. For the last 29 years, I have supported people living with disabilities to live in the community. I am also a Winnipeg Sun columnist. I have been writing a monthly "commentary" since January 2010.

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Michael Thompson

I was born in Winnipeg at St. Boniface Hospital after which I was adopted and raised in Amaranth, Manitoba by a wonderful Ukrainian-Canadian couple. I was fortunate to have had many strong role models growing up, particularly my grandmothers, both of whom were very strong and determined. I initially moved to Winnipeg to begin my high school education at St. Boniface Diocesan High School and have lived and worked here ever since. I began living in Osborne Village as of 1991 and have almost always lived within walking distance of downtown Winnipeg. We currently live in Osborne Village. I was fortunate to meet my partner, Jill, and to welcome a wonderful baby boy together in 2012. Being a father has been a dream come true. My son Luke now attends kindergarten at Ecole Riverview.

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Bryanna Spina

I was born and raised in Winnipeg, my parents ran a home-based business, and I learned the value of hard work at a young age. I've worked in many fields - hospitality, retail and business-to-business sales. My passion for helping people led me to personal wellness and yoga instruction, and I started my own small business in 2012. I am also a dedicated volunteer and have spent many years on the Board of our of our neighbourhood community centre.

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Sherri Rollins

Sherri Rollins is an experienced public servant with a background in conflict resolution, human resources, business, and organizational development. She has held various policy roles in the provincial and federal government and in the private sector. As a proud Huron-Wendat woman, Sherri has also worked with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and is currently employed with the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

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Jeff Palmer

I grew up in River Heights and attended Grant Park High School. After high school I attended the University of Manitoba for a BA, and then the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Halifax for an Environmental Planning degree. I returned home to complete a Master of City Planning degree in 2003. Over the past 18 years I've worked as a city planner for the Forks Renewal Corporation, CentreVenture Development Corporation, and the University of Winnipeg Community Renewal Corporation. I am currently a partner in Catapult Community Planning, a small planning firm I operate with a fellow University of Manitoba alumni. I am married to Carolyn Frost and we have two children, Heidi and Bridget, who attend Ecole Riverview School. We have lived in Riverview since 2006.

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Stephanie Meilleur

Having served as the Osborne Village Biz Executive Director for 7 years, I have poured my heart into the Winnipeg community. Spearheading and creating the Osborne Village Foot Patrol, producing Canada Day, Winnipeg’s largest and longest running street festival, and being a leader in advocacy for business owners and residents for the Fort Rouge and East Fort Garry community. Standing up for small business is only one of my priorities and does not shadow any of my other platforms.

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Peter Koroma

Peter Koroma is a community advocate with decades of experience in public service and helping people deal with government. He is actively involved with immigration sponsorship and settlement services in Winnipeg, and has a history of supporting cross-cultural exchanges in Winnipeg.

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