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Get To Know Nelson's Council Candidates

From left, Travis Hauck, Jesse Woodward and Rob Richchi, are eager to serve Nelson for the next four years. — Submitted photos

The list of candidates vying to lead Nelson City Council more than tripled the number of seats available in chambers at 310 Ward Street after nominations closed.

The Nelson Daily understands the difficulty facing voters to learn more about what each individual candidate brings to the table.

Which is why leading up to the October 20 municipal election, The Nelson Daily has asked each candidate to explain why they should be one of the six councillors assigned with the task to lead Nelson for the next four years.

Today, The Nelson Daily readers hear from candidates Travis Hauck, Jesse Woodward and Rob Richchi.

Other candidates on the ballot include, Bob Adams, Brittny Anderson, Laureen Baker, Robin Cherbo, Michelle Hillaby, Charles Jeanes, Robbie Kalabis, Rik Logtenberg, Janice Morrison, Keith Page, Leslie Payne, Joseph Reiner, Cal Renwick, Brian Shields, Margaret Stacey and Stephanie Wiggins.

Travis Hauck

Hi - I’m Travis Hauck. I’ve called Nelson home since 1999. I’m from Saskatchewan and have a beautiful wife and two wonderful children.

It was the mountains that brought me here, and I was very fortunate to find myself in the heart of downtown working at Gerick Cycle and Ski for over15 years. I believe I’ve played a large role in making Nelson a memorable experience for newcomers and tourists through serving the community through work, or volunteering at events. I feel I’ve earned the trust and respect of the community.

I pinch myself every day and am honoured to be considered an influential citizen in a community of highly credible and skilled people, all here to make life as amazing as it can be. This is a vibrant city with great people, and we all seem to draw on the energy of each other.

Hard work and dedication are what made me who I am today. I’m an accomplished athlete and an honest person with nothing but good intentions for making the future of my community as good as it can be.

Voting for me for City Council will help make your Nelson safe, vibrant, and livable.

Rob Richichi

My name is Rob Richichi. I am 56 years old and married to my wife Rebecca. We have a nine-year-old son, Jeremiah, who we are proud to raise in Nelson. I have a Bachelor of Education Degree as well as Master of Arts and Organizational Management Degree. Rebecca and I own and operate several businesses in Nelson and the surrounding area.

My reasons for running for City Council are simple. I would like to help bring Nelson back to a respectable, clean, and healthy city. A city we can all be proud of.

My goal is to work with council and our Mayor, to treat the City of Nelson as a business. We have a lot of management controlling how the city is spending our resources. I would like to suggest that the councilors together with the Mayor become more involved in day to day operations. By approving an increase in salaries for council and Mayor, I think it is time we treat these positions as full time jobs.

 I don’t believe in “empty campaign” promises but I do have a wish list.

My wish list includes:

  • Terminate high paying management positions. (Lower the ratio of managers to employees)
  • Return to weekly garbage pickup
  • Prepare a common-sense snow removal schedule
  • Reduce senior parking passes to $50 per year
  • Suggest a tax freeze for the next two years (while we get management spending to an acceptable level) 
  • Increase police presence in the downtown core (Full time beat cop as necessary)

I will bring fresh ideas to the table. I would like to look at the potential to move our City campground to the old garbage dump site. This will enable large campers to stay while they explore our town. If this is possible, I would recommend the city create an affordable “Tiny Home” park where the city campground currently sits. I would recommend twenty tiny homes to start.

With regards to homelessness and low-cost housing, I believe this is a problem we all have to try and fix. I would suggest working with our MLA and our provincial government, to help with a growing problem. Thank you for all of your support.

Jesse Woodward

I grew up on a farm in the Slocan Valley in the 1970’s and Nelson was the big exciting city to me when I was a kid. 

s an adult I have always been drawn back to Nelson and the Kootenays. My wife and I returned to put our roots down here 8 years ago after I completed my Master’s degree in Sustainable Environmental Management from the University of Saskatchewan. 

We are now parents to a lively and loving 5 year old and we bought a house here two years ago. I have been the West Kootenay EcoSociety's Markets & Events Director for the last seven-plus years. The duties of this position include the yearly organization and management of the Cottonwood Community Market, The Nelson Downtown Local Market, the MarketFest summer street celebrations and GardenFest as well assisting in other yearly events and programing that the EcoSociety hosts. 

I have a deep lifelong connection to Nelson and the Kootenays in general and I want to contribute my efforts to making it an even more wonderful and wholesome place to live, work and raise families. 

My seven-plus years as the Markets & Events Director has shown me that dedicated and reliable management can support local economic and cultural well-being and I want to bring that experience and learned knowledge to the Nelson City Council Chamber.  

My election prioritise are action on local climate change issues like wild fire control, supporting a healthful community for everyone from babes to elders and developing better communications between the public and the City.