Hemphill steps down

Port Hardy Councillor Jessie Hemphill has announced she will be stepping down in mid-September.

Port Hardy Councillor Jessie Hemphill has announced she will be regretfully stepping down in mid-September.

A byelection will be held to replace her in October.Hemphill announced the news at the regular monthly meeting of District of Port Hardy council April 26.

Hemphill was first elected in 2011, the youngest woman and first person from a local First Nation to sit at the table.In 2014, Hemphill sought re-election campaigning that she would be splitting her time between Port Hardy and Nanaimo for 2015, promising to attend most council meetings in person, or via teleconference.A promise she kept, said Mayor Hank Bood.

“She was an excellent councillor, period,” said Bood. Even though she was living in Nanaimo, “at the end of the day she was as good as any councillor I had,” he said. Hemphill will be hard to replace, because “she did a really good job.” In particular, Hemphill “drove that really necessary part of our community” which is the liaison with First Nations. “We need to do more things together (in order to be successful) and she drove that process in a very smooth way and it worked,” said Bood.

Hemphill also gave the district an influence in the outside world through her involvement with various groups such as the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities, said Bood. In addition to municipal politics, Hemphill runs her own consulting business, helps First Nations communities with community planning and facilitation, and is involved in a range of other roles from sitting on the board of the Canadian Women’s Foundation’s Girl’s Fund to co-founding the Young Elected Officials Network.

Hemphill grew up in Port Hardy and attended the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw School. As a teenager, her family lived on the reserve and she attended Port Hardy Secondary School. During her tenure, Hemphill has been an advocate for sustainability, green power, youth engagement, community planning, economic development and First Nations relations. In fact, Hemphill chaired the new First Nations Relations Committee which focuses on trying to do finding ways for the District to work towards reconciliation.

Just Posted

Port Hardy council hesitant to formalize question period in agendas, refers it to committee

In first act as new council, representatives were uncertain about formalizing question periods.

Gas prices on Vancouver Island to drop six cents

But a ‘volatile’ market could lead to increases in the coming weeks

Mt. Waddington’s Salvation Army releases eye-opening statistics report for 2017

Shelter overnight stays saw a 431 per cent increase since 2014.

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

BC Ferries passengers wait to leave Vancouver Island after Remembrance Day

Traffic aboard BC Ferries slows after Remembrance Day long weekend

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Vancouver Island remembers

Important stories shared as Islanders salute those who made the greatest sacrifice

Protesters confront Environment Minister in B.C.

Protesters wanting more for killer whales confront Catherine McKenna

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

Cowichan school district defends lack of notice to parents following elementary student arrest

Officials with School District 79 stand by their decision not to send out an alert.

B.C. firefighters rescue horse stuck in mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

Most Read