After two terms in office, Rocky View Division 3 Councillor Gordon Branson won’t seek a third, he announced May 25.
Although the decision was difficult, Branson decided to follow his intuition.
“I think it is a gift to know when it is time to do something different,” said Branson. “It has been rewarding, and satisfying and frustrating at times.”
Branson appreciated the variety of backgrounds represented on Council and enjoyed working with Division 3 residents, saying he appreciated the honest, open environment prevalent in the area.
“It is just an excellent community,” said Branson. “Having the opportunity to meet and represent a variety of people from different walks of life has been a highlight of my career.”
Drawing on a 29-year history with the Calgary School Board in various roles such as teacher, consultant and manager, Branson contributed to long term planning in the County.
He was the initial chair of the Growth Management Strategy committee and represented Rocky View on the Calgary Regional Partnership committee. Branson considered the experience rewarding, despite the County’s withdrawal from the Partnership.
“I hope I helped bring increased focus to matters of policy development, multi-year financial planning and the need for strategic planning and growth management strategy,” said Branson.
He hopes the newly elected council will continue to plan strategically and be a strong voice for county residents.
“I think we need to provide enhanced focus, commitment and resources behind things like communication, strategic planning, expansion of public engagement and advocacy. I think we need to advocate more vigorously vis-ŕ-vis the provincial government on things like the Land Stewardship Act and its possible implications.”
Branson’s advice for potential candidates is to have lots of time to commit, as he feels the coming year is critical for Rocky View.
“Because of the nature of the turbulent times we are in, I think anyone that wants to run needs to have the capacity to, at times, work on a full-time basis.”
Branson doesn’t plan to disappear from the County.
“I wasn’t looking for a long career,” he said. “I was looking to have a positive impact. I hope to continue to make an impact, just as a regular resident.”