This is the year Kevin Flynn hopes to make his personal goal of becoming Salmon Arm’s mayor a reality.
The three-term city councillor officially announced this week his intention to run for mayor in the November municipal election.
“I wasn’t sure if this wasn’t a little early for me business-wise, and I had to come to grips with that,” Flynn told the Observer. “But from a point of view of what I’ve wanted to give to the community, I have wanted to at some point be mayor – it was one of my personal goals and I feel I can do a very good job for the community.”
A combination of factors led to Flynn’s decision, from Mayor Marty Bootsma’s decision not to run again for the mayor’s chair, to all the work he’s been doing on behalf of the city at the regional and provincial levels.
This includes serving as a director on the Columbia Shuswap Regional District as well as the Union of BC Municipalities, as chairperson of the Municipal Insurance Association and past president of the Okanagan Sterile Release Program.
Locally, Flynn has been a municipal representative with the Shuswap Lake and Area Agriculture Association and the Fall Fair, and is the chair of the Greenways Liaison Committee. Given the requirements of being mayor, Flynn is preparing to step back from some of his provincial involvements, though he says these experiences have provided value for him and the city.
In his personal/professional life, Flynn is a self-employed partner in Salmon Arm Financial Ltd., a financial planning, insurance and employee benefits consulting firm. This, he says, allows him the flexibility to commit the time needed to be involved in municipal politics.
Flynn calls his past nine years in politics very rewarding and says his voice and decision making have contributed positively to the future of the community. This has included backing projects like the Fletcher Park upgrade and splash park, the new city hall and courthouse, Blackburn Park enhancements and the new water treatment plant. As a supporter of Salmon Arm’s business community, Flynn has also supported projects such as the Piccadilly Mall expansion, the new Askew’s, SmartCentres, and “many other projects to ensure that Salmon Arm remains vibrant and grows in a progressive and positive manner.”
Flynn recognizes that he has his detractors, noting that in politics you cannot please everyone.
He stresses the importance of having the facts, and not making matters personal.
“It’s about what you think is good for the community versus what somebody else does, and at the end of the day you both could be right, it’s just a different perspective,” says Flynn.