Edmonton City Hall. The next municipal election is Oct. 18, 2021. Photo: iStock.

Meet the Edmontonians running for mayor and council

The next municipal election is on October 18, 2021.

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Edmonton's next civic election is on October 18, 2021. We’re keeping a master list of all the candidates who have declared they’re running for city council (just like we're doing for Calgary). The nomination period is from January 4 to September 20, 2021.

On Dec. 7, 2020, Edmonton City Council passed a bylaw that approved new names and borders for the city's 12 wards. Find your ward here. We've included a pronunciation guide and audio samples for the Indigenous ward names courtesy of the City of Edmonton.

The list is up to date as of July 16. If we’re missing anyone, or if there are any errors, let us know at hello@sprawlalberta.com.


Edmonton City Council

Mayor

Chukwudi says he is a geological engineer who has worked in the oil and gas industry as well as the City of Edmonton. He wants to promote business growth through grants and tax breaks, diversify Edmonton’s economy, and to improve infrastructure such as bridges, roads and sidewalks. Chukwudi also wants to address homelessness and addiction through the creation of permanent housing units as well as a reevaluation and redesign of supervised consumption sites.

The owner of a mobile tire shop, Comrie takes issue with what he calls Edmonton’s “uncontrollable debt” and “excessive taxation.” While scant on details, he believes federal policies adopted by the current city council is undermining the rights and freedoms of Edmontonians. Comrie wants to support small business, decrease spending, and says “bike lanes are not high on (his) priority list.”

Gregg, a local artist and musician, is throwing his hat in the ring for the second time since 1998. His list of platform priorities include free transit, freezing the police budget and investing in alternate strategies to reduce crime. Declining donations to his bid for mayor, Gregg also wants to get “big money out of politics.”

Krushell is a former, three-term city councillor who left public office in 2014 for the private sector. While at city hall, she was involved in decommissioning the trolley bus system, negotiating the U-Pass for post-secondary students, and closing the City Centre Airport. Krushell wants to advance the city on three fronts: economic recovery, core services and maintenance, and support for vulnerable residents.

Billing himself as a community activist, entrepreneur, writer and a former educator, Marah says he is mounting his own campaign after promoting others for more than 30 years. Key issues that concern him include addressing homelessness and employment as well as health and environment to improve quality of life.

The three-time councillor was first elected to Ward 5 for one term in 2004, and then Ward 11 since 2013. After unsuccessful runs in 1998 and 2001, Nickel will contest the mayor’s seat for a third time this fall. Besides opposing tax increases for residents and businesses, he wants to end photo radar, pause the Valley Line LRT, and reduce city hall’s reliance on consultants.

An entrepreneur and former city councillor elected in 2013 to Ward 5 for one term, Oshry founded Blue Pen Capital, which finances infill developers. He also founded Remedy Cafe. Oshry’s platform underlines inclusion, post-pandemic economic recovery, building amenities into communities, and narrowing city hall’s focus.

A former Edmonton bus driver and city councillor, Sohi was first elected to Ward 6 in 2007, and then Ward 12 in 2010 and 2013. But in 2015, he made a run for federal politics, and won the seat for Edmonton-Mill Woods before becoming a cabinet minister, handling the infrastructure and then natural resources portfolios. A few of his early platform points include economic growth, environmental protection, and dealing with systemic inequality.

The president of Crestwood Community League is running to be Edmonton’s first female, Métis mayor. Steele’s campaign page describes her as an entrepreneur, and teacher with experience working for the governments of both Canada and Alberta. Among Steele’s priorities are a property tax review, ending homelessness, and improving family access to amenities such as recreation and community centres.

A first-time mayoral candidate, Watson says she wants a city that works for all Edmontonians. With more than 20 years of experience working in technology and innovation, she founded Innovate Edmonton and co-founded Alberta Innovation Corridor. Watson wants to appoint an independent accountability officer to vet all motions put before council, and to create a “central business neighbourhood” downtown to stimulate activity in the core.



Nakota Isga
Pronunciation: NA-KOH-TAH EE-SKA

Knack is seeking a third term. He is listed as a council advisor on the city’s transit service advisory board, youth council, and accessibility advisory committee. Knack believes consistency from this council to the next is key and decided against a run for mayor for that reason. He also believes the Valley Line expansion of the LRT as well as funding for other major infrastructure projects will be major issues facing the next city council.

Born and raised in west Edmonton, Weston is a truck driver for a landscaping and construction company. Working to end homelessness is a pillar of Weston’s platform, but he also wants to “revamp” Vision Zero to focus on education and safe driving, and expand Winterburn Road to improve access from Stony Plain Road and Whitemud Drive.

Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

Dave Olivier



Anirniq
Pronunciation: A-nirk-nik

A former paramedic and City of Edmonton employee, Davies wants to make downtown more appealing for businesses, analyze and review major construction projects, and reexamine infrastructure projects (such as the gondola) in the spirit of sustainable growth. He also wants to see the city’s climate goals on achievable timelines, and innovate service delivery by enhancing the city’s mobile apps.

Seeking a third consecutive term, Esslinger is one of two women on council, and was the only woman elected in her first term in 2013. Noted for her work to ensure women’s voices are heard in local government, she also started a council initiative to create greater awareness around gender-based violence, and represents Edmonton in the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

Haymour is an Alberta Sheriff, a Canadian Forces veteran, and a Ward 2 candidate who placed behind Bev Esslinger in Edmonton’s 2017 election. He also attempted to run provincially with the Alberta Party in 2019, and the NDP in 2012 and 2008. Haymour wants to scrap photo radar, promote business and create a “Seniors’ Advisory Committee“ to include the perspective of older Edmontonians on municipal issues.

Henderson runs Edmonton Mama, a resource site for child-friendly, family activities. While this is her first run for council, she says she has successfully advocated for several crosswalk lights in school areas, and educates residents on ways to access resources for community-minded ventures. She believes in consulting with constituents on matters that will affect their neighbourhoods, their families and their daily lives.

According to her website, Rutherford has a graduate degree in community development and a background in the public sector. While she plans to release her platform in June, she says she wants to build strong, safe and connected communities with access to affordable services. She would also like to focus on reducing Edmonton’s carbon footprint and rein in urban sprawl.

Tyler Zutz
Zutz describes himself as a long-time consultant with experience in business analysis and project management. He’s running because he sees a lack of accountability on council. While Zutz hasn’t rolled out a platform yet, he says he’s opposed to incumbents getting paid to campaign, and commits to disclosing his campaign contributions at least two weeks before the election.



tastawiyiniwak (ᑕᐢᑕᐃᐧᔨᓂᐊᐧᐠ)
Pronunciation: TASS-TAW-WIN-EE-WOK

In 2017, Ali was the runner-up for public school board trustee in Ward A. Also known as Knowmadic, Ali is an artist, a former local poet laureate and a community builder. Passionate about art and education, he sits on community boards including the Edmonton Arts Council where he chairs the equity committee. Ali also works with the provincial government to make Alberta more inclusive.

Ammar is a professional engineer and supervisor for a local seal manufacturing and distribution company. His vision for the city includes eliminating photo radar, speeding up construction projects, reviewing (and freezing) property taxes, supporting local small businesses and attracting investment to the city’s north side.

Bondarchuk is a constituency manager for a local MLA and a former president of the Lorelei-Beaumaris Community League. His priorities include restructuring residential property tax, tying photo radar fines to vehicle owners' income, and creating funding streams to pay for high-quality and accessible services. He also wants to work with the Alberta government to secure stable and secure grant funding for municipalities.

A reservist lieutenant with the navy and an advocate for Edmonton's northside, Dziadyk vice-chairs the Edmonton Salutes Committee, which recognizes military contributions, as well as the Community and Public Services Committee. He pushed to rename a stretch of 97 St. to Canadian Forces Trail.

Gerona says she wants to give back to the city and ward that have given so much to her since immigrating to Canada as a child. A Filipina-Canadian, she immigrated to Canada with her family in 1999, and wants city hall to reflect the inclusiveness and diversity of Edmonton.

Hafiz is a donair shop owner who moved to Edmonton in 2009 before studied petroleum engineering at NAIT. His priorities include facilitating a smooth transition out of the COVID-19 pandemic, improving community safety, maintaining urban infrastructure, and fighting for the interests of small business owners.

Principe is a registered dental hygienist and has worked as an instructor at NAIT. She believes council can be more fiscally responsible and sees bike lanes as an example of excessive spending. Principe doesn’t believe in defunding police, and wants to see lower taxes through responsible budgeting, better public transit service and improved infrastructure.



Dene
Pronunciation: DEH-NEH

According to his campaign page, Amani was born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and fled the country along with his family during the Second Congo War. He says he arrived in Edmonton 12 years ago and was driven by a strong sense of service to run for council. Besides improving public transportation and Indigenous relations, he wants to invest in affordable housing and help businesses and community organizations deliver services.

A local mother and businesswoman, Palmer says she’s running for council to speak up for every-day Edmontonians. She believes in maintaining parks, green spaces, roads and sidewalks. Palmer also wants the city to invest in job creation programs, and to support police.

The incumbent is campaigning to extend his tenure as a city councillor. In addition to his time at City Hall, Paquette is an award-winning Indigenous artist and author. He is passionate about community building and common-sense decision-making. He sponsored a food security initiative, and introduced a motion to have council declare a climate emergency.

Velthuizen will face incumbent Paquette for the second time in two elections. She says the pandemic has shaped her focus and she will work to ensure all Edmontonians are positioned to participate in the economic recovery and future growth of the city. Velthuizen believes the bus network redesign is flawed, namely for removing bus stops.



O-day’min
Pronunciation: Oh-DAY-min

Akbari is the director of business relations with Derks Fine Group of Companies. After growing up and living in the Middle East and South Asia, he says, he first came to Canada in 1997 to study classical theatre and international politics. His vision for the city includes affordable housing and revitalized parks downtown. He also believes in supporting Edmonton's downtown arts community and attracting businesses to the core.

Battiste is a Lawyer who has worked across all three Prairie provinces, and is a former executive director of the Edmonton Police Commission. She believes that the city needs to do a better job of both addressing and preventing homelessness in Edmonton.

Bruff is a disability advocate who has worked with vulnerable Edmontonians. He says he is committed to supporting small business, empowering social service initiatives, and creating more green spaces. He also wants to see maintenance of transportation infrastructure, such as alleys, bridges and roads.

The councillor for Ward 7 is running in a newly-drawn ward that now includes the core. Caterina, with a long background in business, was first elected to represent Ward 3 in 2007, and then Ward 7 since 2010.

Stevenson is an urban planner and works to provide affordable housing with the Right at Home Housing Society, where she has served as both staff and board president. Her priorities include taking decisive action against climate change, investing in public spaces and supporting a diversified economy.

Wolchansky has worked for Alberta's public service and been a community advocate with the Fruit Loop Society of Alberta. His platform includes piloting fare-free transit on weekends, completing the O-day'min bike network, and strengthening council's relationship with community leagues.

Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

Naima Haile



Métis
Pronunciation: MAY-TEA

John-West has 30 years of experience working in Edmonton’s social services. Her priorities include creating urban green spaces, highlighting diversity and equality gaps in city departments, and assessing how the city has managed the costs connected to the pandemic as well as supports for residents and businesses.

Kosowan worked at City Hall in the 1990s as an executive assistant where he played a small role in the city’s adoption of BusLink. He has served on local constituency and riding associations over the past two decades and is committed to giving a voice to residents. Key issues in his campaign include housing, transit, protecting mature communities, greens paces and sustainability.

Longo says she will fight for jobs, healthy neighbourhoods, and strong public services. She says her experience as a postal worker, registered nurse and her advocacy work with the Canadian Labour Congress have prepared her for the role of city councillor.

Matthews was a police officer, human resources professional and entrepreneur. She says Edmonton’s river valley presents opportunities for recreational, cultural and commercial development. She is critical of council’s property tax increases, delays in project completion and cost overruns, subsidized LRT expansion, and expenditures on “political vanity projects.”

An immigrant from Iran, Melli is a local entrepreneur that feels strongly about Edmonton's heritage. He is passionate about neighbourhood safety, dealing with homelessness, attracting innovation, incentivizing the installation of solar power panels, improved waste management, water conservation, and supporting local artists as well as marginalized communities.

Co-founder and president of YEGarden Suites, an advocacy group and resource for Edmontonians building backyard infill suites, Salvador has also served on several boards in the city. Some of her platform priorities include community health, safety and wellness, fiscally responsible policy, climate resilience and growing the city's local economy

Townsend bills himself as a community builder and an entrepreneurial innovator. He believes that Edmonton will rebound stronger through innovation, fiscal responsibility and community spirit. His volunteer experience includes founding the Grower's Dozen Community Garden in Parkdale, and liaising between the LGBTQIA2S+ community and Edmonton police.



sipiwiyiniwak
Pronunciation: SEE-PEE-WIN-EE-WOK

General immigrated to Edmonton after she and her brother lost both parents and a sister in an accident. She has served on the Rio Terrace Community League, Edmonton Transit Service Advisory Board, and Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues. She's an advocate for strategic densification, expanding transit routes, and environmental stewardship of Edmonton's river valley.

After being elected to represent Ward 5 in 2017, Hamilton is seeking re-election in sipiwiyiniwak. She describes herself as a socially responsible fiscal conservative. In her rookie term, she co-sponsored council's design initiative, which works to improve the function and appearance of city buildings and spaces. She also sits on the Edmonton Police Commission.

Hayes is a realtor who used to work as a site superintendent for local construction companies. His priorities include a focus on economic recovery, enhancing public transit, support for small business and better resources for those who need housing or are living with addictions and mental illness.

A local entrepreneur, Hlady wants a sustainable city. He says eliminating budget overruns while increasing financial accountability are top priorities and he wants the city to better negotiate its contracts. He opposes industrial development in the river valley and aims to work on housing and transportation solutions.

Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

Daniel Heikkinen



papastew
Pronunciation: PAH-PAH-STAY-OH

Ali says he aspires to be the youngest and first Black city councillor in papastew. The university student has board experience and wants to instill hope in youth, immigrants and minorities through his city hall run. If elected, he promises to bring a youthful energy and clear vision to build a more robust Edmonton.

Goa was the Ward 8 runner up in Edmonton's 2017 election, placing behind Ben Henderson. She says she is excited about implementing the new city plan and she wants to be a liaison between community members, developers and the city in those discussion and decisions. A few of her platform points include affordable housing, community engagement, and a just energy transition that considers changes to the housing and transportation sectors.

Janz has over a decade of experience as a public school trustee. His priorities include promoting the local economy and economic diversification, as well as strengthening core public services. Janz also prioritizes energy transition and action on climate change.

Schindelka is a business owner, and before that he worked in radio. He wants to protect Edmonton’s river valley ecosystem, and reduce salaries for the mayor and councillors.

Raised in St. Alberta, Vass moved to Edmonton in 2003. He wants to foster growth in Edmonton by attracting innovation, and says this can be achieved by improving access to daily essentials, building carefully, and with meaningful community consultation.

Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

James Cameron

Susan Field



    pihêsiwin (ᐱᐦᐁᓯᐏᐣ)
    Pronunciation: Pee-hay-soo-win

    Cartmell is an engineer, small business owner, and an incumbent councillor seeking a second term. He is a member of council's inter-municipal and regional development committee, as well as the audit committee. According to the City of Edmonton, he supports council initiatives on health and recreation, active transportation, and Edmonton's winter city strategy.

    Originally from Durango, Mexico, Perez Arellano studied public relations in Guadalajara before immigrating to Canada in 2012 and becoming a citizen in 2019. She has a background in student politics and says she’s concerned about climate change, believes in standing up against injustice, and wants to see diverse people representing Edmontonians on city council.



    Ipiihkoohkanipiaohtsi
    Pronunciation: E-pee-ko-ka-nee piu-tsi-ya

    Hoyle was a president of the Heritage Point Community League, and former Alberta Party president. She says she has a vision for a resilient, prosperous, and caring city, and a council that is accountable to the Edmonton's diverse population.

    After reporting on Edmonton City Hall for more than 20 years, Johnson, formerly a 630 CHED city hall bureau chief, wants to serve as a councillor. His priorities include job creation and policies to reduce business costs. Johnson also says residents of this ward need an advocate for low taxes, safe communities, and well-planned (and plowed) roads.

    Also known as “Can Man Dan,” Johnstone is an anti-poverty activist who has been raising money for and supporting both businesses and Edmontonians in need. He believes in accommodating seniors, fighting hate and poverty, and taking a grassroots approach to governing.

    Leib is a social psychologist and executive director of the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services at the University of Alberta. She wants to see public services prioritized and financially accessible. Leib also believes Indigenous knowledge keepers and climate experts should guide climate action.

    Morgan has worked in the City of Edmonton’s transit branch since 2007—most recently in LRT operations. He’s also a former president of the Montrose and Heritage Point Community Leagues, and was a district representative on the Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues. Morgan believes the city’s growth should be managed through increased density rather than sprawl, and that police funding should be based need for the service, while recognizing that some issues, such as mental health, should be handled by social services.

    Rice is listed as the volunteer director on the Twin Brooks Community League board, and describes herself as a civil servant with experience in financial and business planning, as well as a former university professor specializing in math and education. Her campaign page does not currently list any platform details.



    Karhiio
    Pronunciation: Gar-ee-he-o

    Kakar says he is an architectural professional who moved to the city in 2014. He disapproves of photo radar, believes “decrepit” neighbourhoods need to be “revamped to a decent level,” and says parts of Gateway Boulevard should to be improved for the sake of esthetics. Kakar also wants to explore ways to dampen traffic noise around LRT lines and Anthony Henday Drive, and wants Edmonton to have signature events and attractions to make it a tourist destination.

    Shaw is a project manager with Alberta Health Services, and president of the Knottwood Community League. He believes the city needs to spark the economy by cutting taxes and encouraging development, and says collaboration between developers, building owners and government agencies can address homelessness.

    Tang, who describes herself as a public health advocate, is running for a second time since 2017, when she lost to Mike Nickel in Ward 11. According to her campaign page, she believes in local solutions to climate change, and drawing upon local expertise and data in decision-making.

    Turner is s a business professional and an advocate for Edmonton. According to her campaign page, she is committed to innovation, quality services, affordable housing and business growth. She believes the residents of her ward deserve practical and decisive leadership.

    Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

    Charan Saggu



      Sspomitapi
      Pronunciation: SS-POH-ME-TAH-PEE

      The current councillor for Ward 12 is seeking another term. Banga is a retired Edmonton police officer, and prior to that an engineer. As President of the Punjab United Sports and Heritage Association, he helped to plan and execute a portion of the development of the multi-million dollar Ivor Dent Sports Park, in partnership with the City of Edmonton.

      Sehmby has worked as a postal worker for over 20 years, and says he's an active volunteer with the Edmonton Food Bank as well as a community organizer. He says being a mail carrier allowed him to see the city problems from the ground, and he wants to be the voice for his corner of Edmonton.

      Candidate(s) without a campaign page:

      Sanjay Malhotra


        Edmonton Public School Board


        Ward A
        Incumbent: Vacant

        Everline Atieno Oloo


        Ward B
        Incumbent: Michelle Draper

        Ward C
        Incumbent: Shelagh Dunn

        Ward D
        Incumbent:Trisha Estabrooks


        Ward E
        Incumbent: Ken Gibson

        Sam Filice

        Rebecca Graff-McRae


        Ward F
        Incumbent: Michael Janz

        Emily MacKenzie


        Ward G
        Incumbent: Bridget Stirling

        Saadiq Sumar


        Ward H
        Incumbent: Nathan Ip


        Ward I
        Incumbent: Sherry Adams


        Edmonton Catholic Schools


        Ward 71

        Incumbent: Terence Harris


        Ward 72
        Incumbent: Sandra Palazzo

        Sandra Palazzo


        Ward 73
        Incumbent: Carla Smiley

        Carla Smiley


        Ward 74
        Incumbent: Debbie Engel


          Ward 75
          Incumbent: Alene Mutala


          Ward 76
          Incumbent: Lisa Turchansky

          Lisa Turchansky


          Ward 77
          Incumbent: Laura Thibert

          Laura Thibert



            Anmarie Bailey is a writer in Edmonton.

            Become a Sprawler today.

            Sign me up!

            None of our stories are behind a paywall. Instead, we’re crowdfunded by regular people like you who pitch in a few dollars a month to power our independent Alberta newsroom. Your support means we can dig into more local stories that other outlets won’t. Support independent journalism by becoming a Sprawl member today!