Steven Kallies is running for a seat on Sparwood council in 2022. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Steven Kallies is running for a seat on Sparwood council in 2022. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Steven Kallies running for a Sparwood council seat

Kallies moved to the community in 2020, and wanted to give back to the community that had welcomed him and his family

Steven Kallies is running for a seat on Sparwood council, saying he was running out of gratitude for the community.

“I was just amazed at how welcoming the community was when we first arrived,” he said, explaining how he and his family moved to Sparwood in late 2020 after he grew up in Fernie and Elkford.

“I got involved in the Sparwood Trails Alliance and Community Garden and Search and Rescue, and really quickly people were offering to take me out and show me the trails and the neighbours would come to do my driveway.”

Kallies has a long history of involvement in community groups in Fernie, where he previously ran for office in 2018.

“It’s really important that people are involved in the community, and that’s what I’m after (in running in Sparwood)”, he said.

“I’m grateful for the service that people put in, and I’m interested in giving back.”

He said that in previous work he’d learned how to be an advocate for everyone involved, meaning that even if he wasn’t empowered to make a decision, he would still take concerns and causes on and advocate for them.

“Moreover, what I’ve been trying to do in the last two years is listen to the people of Sparwood.”

Kallies said he’d heard from the community, and wanted to advocate on their behalf for better accessibility to healthcare, increased and improved accessibility for wheelchair access, push for better cell service in the area, and open up the discussion on the Fire Department and first responder duties.

Additionally, he said he wanted to support zoning for more daycare, find ways to support business retention, and provide services the community expects.

A safety professional by trade, Kallies said his day job gave him experience in processes, data-driven decision making and board and committee involvement that would be valuable working on council because he took responsibility to the people he represented seriously.

“I have a proven track record on being a voice and an effective advocate for the people I’ve represented in the past,” he said. ‘My job as a councillor is to represent the citizens of Sparwood, not Steven Kallies’ personal agenda.”

READ MORE: Sparwood election candidates declared
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