Media Release on Kawartha artsVote

Media Release Presented by Kawartha Lakes Art Council

Congratulations to Mayor Andy Letham and Councillors Yeo, Seymour-Fagan, Elmslie, Veale, Dunn, Ashmore, O’Reilly and Richardson on their successful election to Council.

Kawartha Lakes Arts Council and the Kawartha Lakes Heritage Network look forward to working with Council to further strengthen cultural tourism and economic development in the Municipality.

Interested in electing candidates who support our cultural sector and who believe that long-term investment in the culture of the Kawartha Lakes is vital to our economic and social growth, Kawartha Lakes Arts Council advocated for solutions to the three significant current issues facing the sector; Sector Sustainability, Operational Leadership and Building Towards The Future.

artsVote 2018 emailed all the candidates seeking office in the October election to respond to a series of questions with their answers and how to address these issues. We are pleased to report that all members of the newly elected Council took the time to consider the backgrouind material on the artsVote website and responded to our questions.

Of the 40 candidates running for Council, 27 candidates responded with all four of the Mayoral candidates; Andy Letham, Gord James, Brian Junkin and Peter Weygang, responding.

Of the 11 incumbents running for a Councillor position the following 10 responded; Rob Macklem, Emmett Yeo, Kathleen Seymour-Fagan, Doug Elmslie, John Pollard, Andrew Veale, Pat Dunn, Mary Ann Martin, Patrick O’Reilly and Heather Stauble. Gerard Jilesen did not respond.

Of the remaining 25 candidates running for a Councillor position the following 13 responded; Leslie Mieszkowski, Stephen Slack, John Snider, Stephen Clarke, George Davidson, Ian Nicolson, Duncan Gallacher, John Hagarty, Ron Ashmore, Emily Nigro, Pat Warren, Tracy Richardson and David Watson.

With the following 12 candidates; Raymonde Blais Couture, Don Logan, Jim Greensides, Afe Helleman, Roger McInnis, Derrick Camphorst, Jeffery Farquhar, Al Robb, Charles Clarke, Wayne Hunt, Jack Morrison and Michelle Murphy-Ward not responding.

Responses from all candidates are posted at

On Thursday September 27, 2018 at 7pm at the Academy Theatre, Kawartha Lakes Arts Council held a Town Hall Forum inviting the Mayoral candidates to speak to their positions on support for the cultural sector through a series of prepared questions.

Mayoral candidates Andy Letham, Gord James and Brian Junkin attended with Peter Weygang declining. Roderick Benns, publisher of The Lindsay Advocate was the Evening Moderator.

The forum was open to the public with about 200 people in attendance.

Candidates were asked a series of questions highlighting their understanding of the dynamics of the economic value and challenges of our community’s cultural sector as well as their level of support and strategy for the future of the cultural sector in our community.

While all three candidates acknowledged the value of the sector, Candidates Andy Letham and Gord James supported municipal budget support as a viable means to strengthen the sector with Candidate Andy Letham presenting a definitive strategy for the future of the sector.

The floor was then opened to the audience with many stepping forward to ask questions of the Mayoral candidates. The wrap up of the evening was a Meet and Greet with all the attending candidates in the Guild Room of the Academy Theatre.

Kawartha Lakes Arts Council will continue to advocate for strengthening the arts, culture and heritage sector with the new Council in 2019, and will be commenting on the upcoming Municipal draft budget.


For information, please contact:

Kawartha Lakes Cultural Centre Committee Chair, Susan Taylor

artsVote logo by Tom Collver