Another North Okanagan politician has thrown their name in the hat to run provincially.
As anticipated, North Okanagan Regional District vice-chair and Area C director Amanda Shatzko has announced her intention to seek the nomination for the BC United Party in the newly named Kelowna-Lake Country-Coldstream riding.
Shatzko is seeking to replace BC Liberal Norm Letnick, who previously announced he is not seeking re-election.
"I'm running because the new riding is unique to the province, just as I am unique to politics. It involves the distinct communities of Kelowna, Lake Country, and Coldstream, plus surrounding
electoral areas and OKIB," says Shatzko.
"With the boundary changes due to population growth, the riding's power base is now equally split among the jurisdictions of KLC. This means it is essential to have an MLA representative with the experience, qualifications, knowledge and energy to work with all the areas so that no one is ignored or forgotten."
Shatzko is a PhD scholar at UBC Okanagan conducting research and teaching in the department of political science. She is also board president of Impact Toolbox, which teaches youth social
entrepreneurship in Kelowna. She has also been an Okanagan Regional Library trustee and BC United
board executive for the Kelowna-Lake Country riding association.
"I know what I bring to the table, and it's different than the other candidates," says Shatzko, who was recognized
as one of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women, B.C.'s Change Maker of the Year, and among B.C.'s Top
Forty under 40 in Business.
"To accomplish essential projects for our region, our MLA needs to establish trusting relationships with local governments. I have built strong, collaborative relationships with all the jurisdictions in this riding as a two-term elected official, allowing me to hit the ground running in Victoria," she says.
In Victoria, Shatzko served on the board of the BC Municipal Finance Authority, obtained her master's degree in
communications from Royal Roads University, and received a BC Lieutenant Governor's Award
for her contribution to the arts. She has presented at conferences and events in over 30 countries, including at the United Nations, the Canadian Senate, and the European Union in Brussels.
Regarding the local area, Shatzko says "each community is distinct and has its own issues, as well as overlapping common problems such as health care, affordable housing, and education."
Lumby Mayor Kevin Acton, chair of the RDNO board, announced in August he is seeking the BC United nomination in the new riding of Vernon-Lumby.
The next provincial election is on Oct. 19, 2024.