The field of White Rock candidates for the Oct. 15 municipal election has come into sharp focus with a few last-minute candidate registrations submitted by the 4 p.m. deadline on Friday (Sept. 9).
A total of 16 councillor candidates and four mayoral candidates are registered.
It’s clear that one feature of the upcoming race is the re-emergence of the pro-highrise White Rock Coalition that had dominated city politics during the two-term 2011-2018 administration of former mayor Wayne Baldwin.
Three of the four White Rock Coalition council incumbents beaten at the polls in Democracy Direct’s sweep into office in 2018 are back on the ballot this year.
Notary Public Megan Knight, who served one term as a councillor, is now running for mayor, challenging incumbent Darryl Walker.
Two of her past Coalition colleagues, former councillors Bill Lawrence, a contractor and former owner of the Sandpiper Pub, and Grant Meyer, a BC Ferries second officer, are once again running for council seats.
Another feature of the upcoming election is the evident splintering of the now-defunct Democracy Direct, with two councillors elected as part of the group’s sweep in 2018 – Erika Johanson and software engineering director Scott Kristjanson – now also challenging Walker for the mayor’s chair.
Also seeking council seats again are incumbent one-term councillors Anthony Manning, an aviation safety and quality auditor; Christopher Trevelyan, a high school teacher; and veteran two-term independent, David Chesney.
Former candidate and long-time council critic Garry Wolgemuth and former candidate Fiona McDermid, an activist against overdevelopment are making a second bid for seats on council.
Well-known local personalities testing the political waters as first-time councillor candidates are company director and arts advocate Elaine Cheung, self-employed creative coach and arts advocate Michele Partridge, floral and decor store owner and White Rock Pride president Ernie Klassen and Stephen Crozier, former president of Democracy Direct and a former NDP candidate for the federal riding of South Surrey-White Rock.
Newcomers to the local political arena are fleet management sales executive Herb Amaral, Teya Meilan, occupational first aid attendant Lindsay Manning (not related to Anthony Manning), college instructor Carolyn Latzen and IT operations manager Ron Calliou.
Laurae McNally is once again unopposed as White Rock’s trustee representative on the Surrey School District board.
(An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Megan Knight had served two terms on council, and David Chesney three).