Bruce Jolliffe is the new chair of the Comox Valley Regional District board, selected by fellow board members at its inaugural meeting Thursday at the Westerly.
The Area A director was chosen over Courtenay director Manno Theos, who was elected vice-chair after a tiebreaker vote against Comox director Ken Grant. Former chair Edwin Grieve — director for Area C — declined a nomination for vice-chair.
This will be the first term at the head of the table for Jolliffe. He and Theos will serve in these positions for the next year.
“This is an honour,” Jolliffe said before a few dozen guests. “I’d like to thank the new board for giving me the opportunity to start us off on our new trip.”
Jolliffe thanked Grieve for his leadership during the previous four years — and noted his family history in the Valley.
“Edwin brought his deep roots to the table. His great, great-grandfather settled in the Valley.”
Jolliffe feels the balance of new and returning board members will result in fresh ideas that provide continuity and stability to the nearly 64,000 residents in the district.
“There will be differences but everybody will learn from these and will build a stronger resolve from that.”
He noted local activity such as construction of the new regional hospital in Courtenay, and the continued struggle to provide opportunities for the younger demographic.
“We have social challenges that are still wanting for a solution,” Jolliffe said. “These issues will play a role in shaping our agenda.
“The Comox Valley is a collection of communities sharing both the Comox Valley identity and our respective community identities. Our job as a board will be to resolve a set of priorities that resonates with our diverse constituents, and their day-to-day and long-term concerns. And over the remaining two years of our terms, to put in place policies to address these identified needs.”
Also sitting on the board are Courtenay Mayor Larry Jangula, Courtenay directors Erik Eriksson and Bob Wells, Comox director Barbara Price, Cumberland director Gwyn Sproule and Area B director Rod Nichol.
Each was sworn into office by government agent Anne Graboski.
The board appointed Jolliffe to the Vancouver Island Regional Library board, with Nichol serving as alternate.
Wells will sit on the North Island 911 Corporation. Nichol is the alternate.