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Ten candidates for first chamber board election

Confidentiality stressed as key component in online election design

The nomination period for the Whistler Chamber of Commerce’s first-ever board member election is up, and a total of 10 candidates have been put forward by the community.

Louise Lundy, president of the chamber, was not able to release nominee names prior to Pique’s publishing deadline but said profiles for each candidate will be uploaded on to the chamber website before Nov. 9.

“It looks like we’ve got a really good solid list of really great potential members, and good future potential leaders for the organization. So I am really looking forward to it,” said Lundy. She added that two of the nominees are current board members who are up for re-election.

The election for eight board positions will take place from Nov. 10 to 20 in an entirely on-line format.

“We really wanted to broaden it out to our membership and encourage more candidates to come out. And this is a great way to make sure the whole membership gets a bit of information on all the candidates,” said Lundy.

“What we had done before was have the election at our AGM. So essentially you had to come to lunch to vote,” said Lundy.

She added that the chamber has worked hard to ensure the voting process is as confidential as possible.

“Confidentiality is obviously key. We don’t want anybody to feel that their vote is public information, so even I won’t know who voted for who. The system we are using is pretty air-tight for that. Verification will come from an independent lawyer,” she said.

Once the election period begins, members will receive an e-mail inviting them to register to vote. The chamber will then do a background check to ensure all registered voters are members in good standing and that only one voter is registered per business.

Each registered member will then receive a password and user name by e-mail, which they can use to log on to the chamber’s election website and vote for board candidates.

The basic results from the website will go directly to the chamber’s lawyer, who will compile the final results.

The system has been set up to ensure that no one in the election process will be able to match up voter names with their election ballot.

Lundy added that she is not anticipating any problems this year but hopes to make the system even easier for members to use in next year’s election.

This election marks the first time chamber members have voted for their entire board. Previous boards were appointed after being nominated by other board members. A change to the chamber’s bylaw was made last October to make the process more democratic.