Chamber elections open 

Voting is open for new board members until Dec. 4

click to enlarge NEW FACES The Whistler Chamber of Commerce, which is housed above the Whistler Visitor Centre, will elect three new members of the board next month.
  • NEW FACES The Whistler Chamber of Commerce, which is housed above the Whistler Visitor Centre, will elect three new members of the board next month.

Three open spots on the 2018 Whistler Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors (BOD) are up for grabs and six capable nominees are vying for the positions.

Voting has now begun for the over-630 members of the chamber, and runs until midnight, Dec. 4.

"What we always look for is for new board members to be: well-rounded in terms of their competencies, (to have) knowledge and skills they can bring to the board; (to) have a passion for Whistler and be committed to the vision of the chamber, which is to elevate Whistler business," said Theresa Walterhouse, Chair of the Chamber BOD.

The nominees for the three directors positions are: Matt Bennett, Andrea Bischoff, Tess Evans, Dave Girard, Bruce MacMillan, and incumbent Sarah Strother. Kyle Hannay and Grant Cousar did not seek re-election for their seats.

Nominations were accepted from Oct. 26 to Nov. 10. Each of this year's candidates have met with the chamber and shown they have an understanding of the role, and can bring a unique offering to the table.

"We do have a pretty robust nominations process," said Walterhouse. "We survey all of our board members so we understand the unique competencies, skills and experience that we have, then we consider is there any competencies or knowledge we'd like to round out on the board, or are we going to lose something specific because someone is leaving the board? We think about things like industry representation and long-term succession, and we take all those factors into account as well. Then the board will talk about if we know any candidates that fit that bill."

Bennett has owned and operated Black Tie Ski Rentals in the village for the past seven years. Born in Vancouver, he's a long-time Whistler resident who studied Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Management at Capilano University.

Bischoff is the program manager for Back in Motion Rehab. She is also program manager for Work BC Employment Services in both Squamish and Whistler, and in the past has served on the Whistler Community Services Society.

Evans is a human resources consultant, and owner of HR Galaxy in Cheakamus. She co-authored the Chamber's Recruitment and Retention Tool Kit and once received the Kathy Barnett Leadership Grant.

Girard is the president of Peak Ventures general contracting. His volunteer experience includes serving as president of the local Canadian Home Builders' Association and on the board of directors of the BC Building Envelope Council.

MacMillan is the director of business development with Whistler Sport Legacies. A 14-year resident of Whistler, he also sits on the Whistler Events Working Committee.

Strother is president of Whistler Publishing LP, publisher of both the Whistler Question and Pique Newsmagazine. Along with sitting on the chamber's board, she's also a director of the BC & Yukon Newspaper Association.

For whoever wins the available seats, Walterhouse said there will be new challenges for a Whistler community that is undergoing many changes.

"I think the board members need to anticipate the impact of change, set our strategic direction accordingly and constantly know how to pivot with the changing landscape," she said.

To register to vote, members need to send an email to chamber@whistlerchamber.com to receive an e-ballot link, voter ID and pin number. Each member can cast a vote for up to three board nominees. The winners will be announced at the Dec. 7 annual general meeting. The new members will be sworn in at the first meeting of the New Year.

To find out more about each candidate, visit whistlerchamber.com/about-whistler-chamber/2018-board-election-voting.

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