Kirwan Speaks About a Councillor’s Most Important Role


Date:                     October 22, 2014

To:                        Media

From:                    Robert Kirwan
                             Candidate for Councillor of Ward 5

Re:                         Kirwan Speaks About a Councillor’s Most Important Role

Too many candidates for Council focus on their role as part of a group of 13 people who are charged with sitting on committees and making major decisions on policies, by-laws and budget matters that will affect the entire City of Greater Sudbury. While that is undoubtedly an important part of their job, by far the most important responsibility that an elected Councillor accepts is that of representing the individual and collective interests of the residents living in his Ward.

This is what distinguished the Mayor from the City Councillor. The Mayor is elected by the residents from across the city so he represents all of the Wards. The City Councillors are elected by individual Wards, so they represent their Ward. The City Council comes together to decide on policies that deal with the common interests of all Wards and will ensure that the best interests of their individual Wards are not forgotten in the discussion.

In order to be able to fulfil this responsibility, it is critical that the person you elect as your Ward Councillor has the knowledge of the Ward; the experience of working with the wide range of groups and organizations in the Ward; the ability to navigate the maze that exists at City Hall; the qualifications to be the Voice of the majority of the residents of the Ward; and the ability to advocate on behalf of individual constituents from the Ward who have problems and issues that they are trying to resolve with city staff. You need someone who is going be in your corner, watch your back, and actually accompany you to City Hall to argue on your behalf when you need help. You need someone who is going to answer his phone; check his email; and be available when you need him – not whenever he can get around to it or whenever he gets time off from his other full-time job Being a Councillor is not a part-time job. There are full-time obligations that a Councillor must accept when he is elected.

This individual and collective representation is the primary responsibility that I am accepting as a Ward Councillor. I am representing each and every individual in Ward 5 and I will be there when they have a problem with City Hall and they need support in making their presentation. Every man, woman and child living in Ward 5 is my “client” and I will represent them with passion and vigour at City Hall.

I will also have no problem fulfilling my other role which includes sitting on City Council and discussing and deliberating on the important issues that will affect the entire City of Greater Sudbury. Just because I am a strong Voice for the residents of Ward 5 does not mean that I am going to be detrimental or disruptive to the functioning of City Council. On the contrary! Knowing my role and maintaining my responsibility to the individuals in my Ward will make me a better and stronger member of City Council as we seek what is in the best interests of the entire City.

My only hope is that we end up with a Mayor who has the courage to explore new and innovative approaches to bringing this City back to life and we have 12 Councillors who have such a passion for representing their constituents that we will be able to come together to accomplish great things by the end of  the next four years.

For more information go to



Copyright © 2010 All Rights Reserved
Valley East Today is published by
Infocom Canada Business Consultants Inc.