My Dad: biologist, skier and…politician?

My dad and the Sander-Green clan camping in the '80s on Vancouver Island.

My dad and the Sander-Green clan camping in the '80s on Vancouver Island.

Wearing many hats is inevitable when you’re a resident of this tight-knit Kootenay region.

I,  for example, am a sister, a daughter, a reporter, a skier and sometimes even slip into my alter ego — an obnoxious Russian named Svetlana.

My dad, who lives in Kimberley where I (and the whole Sander-Green clan) grew up, is a biologist, a father, a cross-country ski coach and most recently, the federal Green Party candidate for the Kootenay – Columbia region for the upcoming May 2 election.

At first I thought this put me in an awkward position. My dad is running to become MP for the area and I have to cover it? Do I refer to him as “Green” and pretend that this isn’t the man who changed my diapers and dealt with the teenage hissy-fits?

Of course I do. This week I called all the federal candidates in our riding to introduce myself and asked them a few questions about the focus of their campaigns. I learnt something about myself through this: I like covering politics.

I’m really looking forward to covering the federal election in the coming month. All five candidates seem to have the experience, ideas and drive to make the next month one of healthy competition and constructive dialogue. With the retirement of Jim Abbott, who represented the Kootenay-Columbia riding for the past 18 years, the MP seat really is up for grabs.

I am incredibly proud of my dad. This is his first taste of politics and already — only one week into the game — I can tell he’s going to go back for seconds. Growing up, Dad used to baffle me with the way he balanced his intellect and warm personality with this incredible knack for understanding other people’s point of views. I know this will serve him well in politics and wish him the best of luck with his campaign.

Saying this, it’s my job to cover this election with integrity and fairness, giving every candidate an equal voice and Golden residents a chance to understand each candidate’s campaign before we go to the polls. I’ll try my hardest to do just that.

So even though he may have been the one who  shaped me into the woman I am today (and taught me how to tie up my shoelaces and strap on my ski poles), for the purposes of this job he’s just one of the five candidates trying to represent our riding in Ottawa.

I wish all the candidates the best of luck on their campaign trail. We’ll see you in Golden!

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