I'm Craig Curtis (he, him), and I'm running for the nomination for the Red Deer North NDP.
"I had the pleasure to work with Craig when I was Mayor of Owen Sound.
Craig was an outstanding City Manager and it is true, one of his greatest strengths was his relationship with staff. He always showed respect to every staff member and he acknowledged them all as the key to success of every service and program the city offered. And at the bargaining table, he saw that was reflected in fair compensation.
One of his most successful initiatives was a program where he went to the employees and asked for suggestions about how to run the city more efficiently, with recognition and prizes for best ideas...he knew who had the knowledge to make the city run most efficiently and it was the employees!
I wish I was in Alberta and could vote for him - it would be my first time to vote NDP and I would do so happily knowing the candidate as I do.
Ruth Lovell Stanners, former Mayor of the City of Owen Sound
"Craig Curtis would be the perfect candidate to represent the NDP Red Deer North. I have personally worked with Craig, addressing the issues of equity, diversity and inclusion through my former work at the Golden Circle Senior's Centre. He always challenged us to think about the people and how our decisions affect the community we are serving. He is not afraid to ask the tough questions and always understood the importance of hearing from the community. Craig will ensure that Red Deer's voice will be heard at the government table. He will advocate for change and ensure that Albertans are able to live a good life."
Monica Morrison, retired Executive Director, Golden Circle Senior Resource Centre.
"Craig was my direct supervisor between 2007 and 2019 when he was the City Manager at the City of Red Deer. In all the years I worked for Craig, I always felt trusted to make decisions and lead my team the way I saw fit. He had an uncanny knack for inspiring me as a leader as well as my Communications & Strategic Planning team to work at our best and push the boundaries of how things had been done before. His trust in us was highly motiving and allowed us to move from strictly tactical communications to strategic communications in service to business outcomes and stregic goals.
Craig has an undeniable passion for his work, particularly for municipal government and land use planning. He also has a great ability to see the big picture, distill that into a meaninful plan and help others see the possibilities. His passion, vision and stregic mindset begat success and has made him an important part of Red Deer's history. This impact is demonstrated in the winning bid for the 2019 Canada Winter Games, the Servus Arena rebuild, the commencement of Capstone, and, his largest municipal transformation, Red Deer's Waskasoo Park system.
Not only did Craig make me feel like an integral part of the leadership at the City of Red Deer, he was fun to work with. I certainly miss working with Craig and know that he will continue to make an impact on others."
From LinkedIn - Julia Harvie Shemko
"I had the privilege of working with and reporting to Craig for a decade. He is a leader that provides exceptional vision and mentorship to employees. He is a visionary when it comes to planning and architecture and has the ability to apply that vision in a political, bureaucratic and administrative way. His insight is thoughtful, strategic and applicable in a way that makes meaningful change organizationally and within the community. I very much appreciated working with Craig and respect his approach to leadership."
From LinkedIn - Charity Dyke
"I first had the opportunity to work with Craig Curtis in the early 80s. One of the most exciting projects at that time was the planning and implementation of the Waskasoo Park System. Craig's training as an architect and city planner and his ability to involve community groups led to an outstanding plan and an amazing park system that still makes Red Deer proud 40 years later. Insightful planning, incredible community involvement and strong leadership marked this project and Craig Curtis was one of the key leaders. Craig has had a very successful municipal leadership career which concluded as Red Deer's City Manager. Now he is volunteering to be Red Deer North's MLA. His abilities and experience, and his thorough knowledge of Red Deer would be a real asset.
Larry Pimm, former Red Deer City Councillor
"Craig Curtis has a vision for building vibrant and healthy communities that are welcoming for all. I have known and worked with Craig for more than ten years. As City Manager, Craig's vision and leadership was instrumental in helping to bring the 2019 Canada Winter Games to Red Deer. He understood the positive impact and legacy that the Games would have on the community, not just the sport community, but for the thousands of community members that would get involved by volunteering, performing in the numerous arts and cultural festivals throughout the Games, and even those who chose to cheer on the athletes as spectators. Craig knew that Red Deer could leverage Canada Games funding as well as provincial and federal grants to build legacy facilites such as Servus Arena, the Gary Harris Canada Games Centre, Setters Place and the world-class cross-country ski trails at the River Bend Golf and Recreation Area. The develoment of the plaza in front of the newly renovated Intermediate School provided the cultural hub of the Games and a permanent space for community gatherings for the future. Craig will bring this same vision and leadership for Red Deer as an MLA."
Shelley Gagnon, General Manager Community Services, Sunshine Coast Regional District
"I believe Craig is well qualified to stand as a candidate for the NDP Red Deer North. His analytical skills, leadership skills and his common sense were evident in my years on City Council with Craig as City Manager. Craig will be a well-qualified MLA and a sincere representative for Red Deer North."
Lorna Watkinson-Zimmer, former Red Deer City Councillor
"I have known and worked with Craig for a number of years. He is one of the most intelligent, caring individuals that you will ever meet. His background, knowledge and understanding of governance, leadership, and complex economic and social issues would make him the right choice for MLA for Red Deer North."
Brett Speight, former Executive Director of United Way Central Alberta.
Economy and Affordability
The Alberta economy has begun its recovery from the impact of the pandemic but residents are now faced with the crushing impact of record inflation. Current measures are not adequate. We need immediate action to asist low-income Albertans facing potential evictions and affordability challenges for basic needs. Actions such as re-establishing the cap on electrical rates, fast-tracking childcare subsidies, and indexing benefits for low-income residents.
At the provincial level, initiatives must be taken to diversify the economy and reduce reliance on oil and gas revenues. Development of “green energy” and carbon reduction technology could be economic drivers and a response to climate change. Read more about: Affordability Read more about Economic Development.
Alberta has a crisis in health care. Doctors and nurses are in short supply and people have died because of late ambulance response. In Red Deer, the expansion of the hospital has been delayed for a decade and is unable to meet current needs. I will advocate for the immediate implementation of plans for hospital expansion, increased resources for paramedics and the reversal of ambulance dispatch consolidation.
We must hasten progress on the Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. I support increased funding for the identification and recognition of gravesites at former residential school sites. The province should work with Indigenous Leaders to address Indigenous housing and homelessness. More
The new Provincial Curriculum has been almost universally criticized for not respecting proven ways of educating students, accurate content, diversity and authentic Indigenous content. I support withdrawing the new curriculum and creating a new draft with the involvement of teachers, curriculum experts, stakeholders and parents. Read More
Drug Poisoning Crisis
Addressing the overdose crisis and the toxic drug supply must be a priority for the new government and treated with a focus on human rights and public health and not enforcement. In Red Deer, there is a serious lack of adequate facilities for evidence-based treatment, harm reduction services and shelter accommodation. The ‘War on Drugs’ approach has been a failure and future action must aggressively address the four-pillar approach of prevention, treatment, enforcement and harm reduction. Read more on the Drug Poisoning Crisis here. If you are interested in Harm Reduction specifically, read more here.
I believe in the celebration of all types of diversity whether they be race, religion, culture, age, ability, sexual orientation/gender identity or expression. Hate crimes in Alberta are on the rise including verbal and physical abuse of minorities. I understand my privilege means I need to continue learning about the realities of the lives of others and I strive to do so. I need to use my privilege to prove my ally-ship every day. I will continue to address hate speech and all forms of stigma and discrimination including racism, ableism, and classism. Read more.
Public focus has recently shifted to other issues, but a lack of action on climate change is starting to have devastating consequences. Alberta has an opportunity to be a leader in green energy production and diversifying energy production. All Provincial initiatives should be examined through an environmental lens to ensure they uphold the responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint and the safety of future generations. More