Six questions with Conny Glenn, candidate for Sydenham District

Conny Glenn, candidate for the Sydenham District in the 2022 City of Kingston municipal election. Submitted photo.

Editorial note:

Across the province, Ontarians are getting ready to cast their ballots in every city, town, and county as the 2022 Municipal Election is fast approaching. With election day on Monday, Oct. 24, 2022, Kingstonist has reached out to all candidates within the City of Kingston to create profiles allowing voters to find a brief overview of each candidate in one place. As response comes in, more and more candidate profiles will be added here, which you can access through our Municipal Election 2022 section (with the tab on the homepage), or through our ‘Candidate overview landing page.’

With 45 candidates in total for Kingston City Council alone – and with only one district acclaimed (Countryside District will once again be represented by Gary Oosterhof) and six districts without an incumbent – our goal is to provide as much information as possible leading up to the elections. Thus, we will endeavour to collect response from as many Kingston candidates as possible, with the hope of providing similar coverage for Loyalist Township, Frontenac County, and the Town of Greater Napanee moving forward. All relevant links will be available under the Municipal Election 2022 tab.

For more general information on election process in Kingston, including details on electing Board of Education Trustees, ensuring you are registered to vote, etc., visit the City of Kingston Municipal Elections webpage.

Candidate profiles are being published on our website in no particular order.

Conny Glenn has been a Kingston resident for the past seven years. As an ergonomist and Registered Kinesiologist, she has owned and operated a national ergonomics and wellness consulting company for over 25 years, and is a self-described advocate for the health and well-being of our communities.

This is Glenn’s first time running for council. She is currently the co-chair of National Health and Fitness Day in Kingston and an active committee member of the Rehabilitative Care Alliance. “Individual and population health are really important to me. I’m fortunate daily to work with veterans, businesses, and organizations on improving health safety and well-being,” she said.

Glenn also shared that she enjoys hiking and taking in performances, and said, “If it involves the outdoors, hearing a good story or good music, you are likely to find me there.”

When asked for a “fun fact” Glenn shared that is that she is an avid reader and sci-fi fan, and once dressed up as a Vulcan!

How would you describe your personal political ideology and/or affiliation?

Politics has become increasingly tribal and divisive because of labels and ideology. Municipal politics may be the one arena where we can still escape some of this. I’d describe myself as progressive and moderate. We need to move forward, but solutions are more complex than ideology often allows.

What made you want to run in this municipal election?

Many issues, but really the need for better governance overall. The issues facing us today are more complex, requiring elected officials with more depth and breadth of knowledge and experience. I bring that to the table along with an ability and willingness to communicate with constituents. Politicians underestimate the population’s ability and desire to understand the issues and participate in solutions. We cannot afford one issue candidates, poor communication, or bad behaviour. 

What are the three most common issues voters are bringing up to you as you campaign?

  1. Housing and development
  2. Homelessness
  3. Road conditions and street safety 

What three issues are most pressing/important to address locally, in your opinion?

  1. Housing — the supply, the type and the condition of housing. We don’t have enough, which is driving the affordability crisis, exacerbating homelessness, and decreasing Kingston’s available workforce. We need to build smart and ensure that the type of housing is of good quality and in keeping with our neighbourhoods. Aesthetics matter and, in fact, it’s what draws a number of people, including tourists, to our city. It brought me here. I love the feel of the city and preserving it is important for the quality of life in the city.
  2. Infrastructure. We need to ensure we can support new housing, mitigate climate change issues, and improve road conditions and street safety. We need to prioritize how and where we spend infrastructure money.
  3. Environment. It is the issue of our time. Elected officials need to be environmentally and carbon literate to make good decisions on what avenues to pursue. The city has declared a climate emergency and we need to act like it’s an emergency. There have been good steps made, but we have further to go.

What is the most pressing issue in your district?

Growth and development. Queens has grown and so has the overall population, which is putting pressure on the district. It means more people downtown, homeless encampments, more parties in the area, and resources under strain. It is changing the character of the neighbourhood and placing increased demands on the environment and our infrastructure.

What do you feel sets you apart from other candidates?

If I could pick one word it would be fearless. I’m not afraid to entertain novel solutions and expose these ideas to debate, because ultimately this leads to the best solutions. I also have a leadership style that is collegial and team-based, with an emphasis on communication and fact-based decision-making. Perhaps most importantly is that I really enjoy politics and governance.

All that being said, I think that the citizens of Sydenham want to know if I can get the job done. To that, I would say the best indicator of future success is past performance. I have a record of successful business and community leadership, successful advocacy, and successful communication/education. And just like Ginger Rogers, managed to do it backwards and in heels.

For more information on Conny Glenn, candidate for Sydenham District in the 2022 municipal election, visit her website.

With files from Cris Vilela.

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