By Jamie Rieger
Ian Hildebrand has always been a politically minded person. A number of years ago, he campaigned for LaVar Payne in the federal election and it was then that his interest sharpened.
“I went door-to-door for him around Medicine Hat and Foremost,” said Hildebrand, who is running for a seat on Bow Island town council. “That’s where I started nosing into politics.”
Hildebrand has lived in Bow Island for two-and-a-half years, operating his own plumbing business.
“Three years ago, after doing a large project in NWT, I was looking for a home base and this is where we came. The people here have been very welcoming, which is a nice change compared to other places,” said Hildebrand, who has been self-employed as a commercial contractor for more than a decade and has experience in working with public utilities and municipalities.
“When a town or city is looking to do things that are in the best interest of the community, people or entrepreneurs, who have their own self-interests may not understand this,” said Hildebrand on why he decided to run. “People have told me some concerns they have in town and most do not want to step up and present it to council. There are lots of great ideas out there. Being on council, I am able to take their concerns and present them.”
“We need an open-door policy that allows people to bring their ideas forward. We see people all the time brainstorming over coffee and solutions can come from that, but those ideas have to be taken to council,” he said. “We are looking for areas that require improvements. If it’s not costly or doesn’t interfere, that maybe that is something that can be implemented right away. If not, then let’s have the discussion and do the planning. You have to pay attention, be interested, and be active.”