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Ron Cannan

Plenty to be thankful for

There is a story by Zona Gale called Christmas, first published in 1912, which tells the tale of a town hit by hard times as the season of giving approaches. The factory that employs most of the town is closed and not likely to re-open, and town merchants fear that people will try to shop for Christmas on credit. They do not want to carry the debt and the merchants get everybody in town to agree not to have Christmas that year.

As it turns out, Christmas happens anyway; it exists because it lives in the hearts of those who truly believe in it. With or without presents, “every window was lighted, a fire was kindled in the parlour, and neighbours came from the dark.”

A similarly cynical mood hangs over Canadian politics these days, chipping away at our belief in everything that is great about being a Canadian and living in this amazing country.

Yet it is possible, even necessary, at such times to step back and remember what is important.

We are fortunate to call Canada home.

We have a resilient economy, fair wages and taxes, jobs, safe streets and communities, access to healthcare, social programs and education.

We live in a country that functions on strong democratic principles.

We function very well as a multicultural society.

We uphold the rights and freedoms of conscience and religion; of thought, belief, opinion and expression; of the press and other media of communication; of peaceful assembly and association.

We are and have loyal allies and can protect ourselves and help to protect others.

We can and do give generously.

During the 2010 Olympic Games, in an effort to explain Canada to Americans, journalist Tom Brokaw put together a short tribute to one of the most abiding relationships between two countries. You might want to take a minute and check it out. Sometimes it takes an outsider’s view of us to renew our sense of pride in what it means to be Canadian.

And so the message is this: do not let the merchants of fear, uncertainty and doubt peddle the idea that this country, its democratic principles, its future - is in trouble. It is far from it.

We have much to be thankful for and much to believe in.

In this season of peace, my wish for all is that we regain our sense of connectedness, learn again the importance of respecting each other and our different experiences, and strive to be a positive influence in the lives of each other.

It continues to be an honor to represent you in Ottawa and I look forward to working with you on your behalf in 2013.

From our home to yours, I wish you Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah and the best of the giving season.

The Honourable Ron Cannan is the Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country

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About the author...

Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections.  He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and Regional Government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa.

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chamber of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, women’s resources and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

He is also a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates.

In previous Parliaments Ron has been a member of the Veteran’s Affairs Committee, the Human Resources and Social Development Committee, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and Co-chair of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218(formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine, in particular those vintages not readily available through provincial liquor control outlets.  His motion is now a bill before the House of Commons sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which is well on its way to being passed.  Passage of the bill will create awareness and boost sales for some of Canada’s smaller wineries while generating national pride and international recognition of the award winning efforts of Canada’s vintners.
The Honourable Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections.  He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

On September 13th, 2012 Ron was summoned to be a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and will provide advice to the Government as a member of the Priorities and Planning Sub-Committee on Government Administration.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and Regional Government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa. 

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chamber of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, women’s resources and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

He is also a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates.

In previous Parliaments Ron has been a member of the Veteran’s Affairs Committee, the Human Resources and Social Development Committee, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and a member of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218 (formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine.  His motion became Bill C-311, sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which was passed into law on June 28th, 2012. 

Prior to entering politics, Ron developed a diverse business background as a small business owner and had several years experience in marketing and sales management working with corporations including Coca-Cola, Costco and Corus Entertainment.
 

Very active in his community, Ron has been a Director for both the Central Okanagan Regional District and the Central Okanagan Hospital Board. Ron also served on the Okanagan University College Access to Training Advisory Board, the Glenmore Elementary School Parents Advisory Council, and the Kelowna Christian School Fund Raising Committee.  He was co-founder of the Okanagan Volunteer Festival. Currently Ron is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Kelowna and, along with his wife Cindy, was the honorary Chair of the 2012 Canadian Cancer Society Daffodil Ball.

Ron lives a family-oriented and active lifestyle with his wife Cindy and daughters Amanda, Ashley and Amy and his grandsons Marcel and Nolan.  His hobbies include music and sports.




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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.


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