Councillor Heather Gartshore
District of North Saanich, October 2018
“I first met Geoff in the community when he moved to North Saanich 16 years ago. I’ve known him to wear several hats: hockey coach, Peninsula Minor Hockey Executive, parent, President of the North Saanich Residents Association (NSRA) and most recently, a highly respected and valued colleague on North Saanich Council.
I served with Geoff on the Board of the NSRA for five years, and have just completed a four-year term with him on North Saanich Council.
I am well qualified to speak to Geoff’s diligence, attention to detail, collaborative nature, effective leadership and deep desire to achieve outcomes that are in the best interests of our community. He takes the time and care to ensure that all sides of an issue are considered as he makes decisions.
I have every confidence that Geoff is the right person to take on the role of Mayor for North Saanich this next term, and endorse his candidacy wholeheartedly.”
Councillor Jack McClintock
District of North Saanich, October 2018
“During my term on Council over the past four years with Geoff Orr, I can attest to his sincerity, professionalism and integrity. He has consistently demonstrated a collaborative and fair approach, to work in the best interests of the residents of North Saanich. His experience on Council combined with his reputation as a trusted colleague, also provides a seamless transition to this leadership role. I strongly endorse Geoff Orr for Mayor.”
North Saanich Resident and former Councillor
“I am supporting Geoff Orr for Mayor of North Saanich.
Based on my discussions with Geoff during the last few years, I consider that he:
· Is rigorous in preparing for council meetings and for the various committees of which he is a member.
· Is diligent in evaluating the data and recommendations coming to council from staff.
· Investigates the results of decisions taken and compares the results against the projected outcomes.
· Brings a high level of skill and knowledge to issues with a technical component.
· Listens to and seeks to understand and investigate the opinions and concerns of members of the public on municipal issues.
· Is knowledgeable about the rules and procedures of the Municipality and of relevant provincial regulations under which the Municipality operates.”
North Saanich Resident
“I’m not looking for a politician. ‘Applying’ for the position of North Saanich’s Mayor is a privilege. To get my vote, I want a person who has a long history of involvement with and a deep knowledge of the concerns of all North Saanich’s residents.
I believe Geoff Orr is that person. Here’s why. Good leaders like Geoff are able to do the following:
- Effective leaders build teams. They don’t just ‘pronounce’ decisions or deliver ‘mandates’ for others to follow. Geoff understands the need to stay involved and ensure people or groups who may hold differing opinions are part of any community plan. But, he also knows when a decision is needed and can deliver one knowing that all due diligence in terms of developing a deep understanding of an issue has been done.
- Leaders need confidence but overconfidence usually leads to problems; you don’t have to look far in the political arena to see the consequences of this personality trait. And it’s the citizens who generally pay for the outcomes of bad decisions. Wanting to be the ‘leader’ is insufficient a reason to run for office. After all, four years is a long time for an ill-equipped elected representative.
- Leadership doesn’t come naturally to everyone and it isn’t something that can be learned overnight. I don’t want someone to run primarily for their own ego gratification. I want a great leader; one who views their tenure as a long-term journey where they are committed to continuous reflection and improvement.
- Municipal leaders must be able to COLLABORATE. North Saanich is part of a group. Our elected representatives have to cooperate with key players such as the CRD, our neighbouring towns and municipalities, residents’ associations and individuals who have concerns and deserve to be heard. Geoff continues to demonstrate this trait – as a councillor and hopefully, as our Mayor.”
Farmer and Resident, North Saanich, October 2018
My name is Mike Doehnel, a farmer and resident of North Saanich for 45 years, and I would like to add my support to Geoff Off in his bid for Mayor of North Saanich.
Over the past 10 years I have had the privilege of serving on the Peninsula Agricultural commission (PAC) and as the agricultural representative on the CRD Water Advisory committee (WAC) with Geoff. My committee interactions with him have always been focused and productive when dealing with all maters regarding agriculture and the farming community, who’s desire it is to increase food production on the Saanich Peninsula. I can’t recall Geoff ever being a no show at committee meetings (this happens often), while always being well prepared and engaged in the topics at hand.
I have found Geoff a quick and thorough study who takes his responsibilities to the residents of North Saanich and the greater peninsula farming community very seriously. This has also been the case with the many other equally important issues facing us today, both as a society in general and as locally engaged citizens.
CRD Regional Water Commission Chair and Councillor, Town of Sidney
“I have worked with Geoff for some time when he chaired the Saanich Peninsula Water and Waste Water Commissions before he was elected to Council. I found he was a team player and was always very well prepared to discuss items.
When we were councillors together, he supported me at the CRD Water Commission as my vice chair. He was always very adaptable and ready to take over in a pinch.
I thoroughly support his candidacy for mayor, he will do North Saanich proud.”
North Saanich Resident
“I have been able to call Geoff a good friend since he and his family arrived here in 2001. As a resident of North Saanich I appreciate Geoff’s commitment to protect the rural character of the community. Also, coming from a boating family, Geoff’s position on incorporating boating access infrastructure into community planning is particularly appealing.”
North Saanich Resident
“Geoff has always demonstrated his interest in serving this community – by his years as the president of the North Saanich Residents Association and his 4 years as one of our Councillors. It is as a Councillor though, where Geoff has really demonstrated he has both the temperament (collaborative, thoughtful about complex issues, reasoned in his thinking, and so much more) and experience to successfully lead North Saanich as our Mayor. He has my vote.”
Chair – Arcurve Inc., Director – Calgary Stampede, Former Chairman – Flint Energy Services Ltd. (sold to URS for $1.25 B), October 2018
“As a former business colleague and a long-time friend of Geoff’s, I am excited to see him running for Mayor of North Saanich. Geoff will bring a transparent and accountable mind set to the role of Mayor and create a collaborative and dynamic environment at Council resulting in thoughtful and informed decisions. I know he will provide outstanding leadership as Mayor and will truly be a worthy advocate for North Saanich in making the community a better place for all.”
Sotheby’s International Realty Canada (formerly with Greater Victoria Labour Relations Association)
“I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with Geoff on municipal issues around collective bargaining, policy, and governance. He is incredibly smart with a deep knowledge of local and broader issues. As well as having a genuine dedication to serving his community, Geoff is a natural leader and the obvious choice for Mayor of North Saanich.”
Local Business Owner
“It has been my pleasure to have known and worked with Geoff in a variety of capacities for many years.
Geoff is a visionary, insightful community leader whose approach to public policy issues is always thoughtful and practical. He finds effective solutions to real problems.
I am confident in his ability to serve as mayor of this amazing community and a leader across the Region.”
Dr. Kimberly Speers
“I met Geoff about five years ago and was immediately impressed with his passion to help his community because he strongly believed that North Saanich was a great place to live in and he wanted future generations to enjoy and thrive in this beautiful part of the world for the many years to come. He had been a very active member of the community at that point and made the decision to run as Councilor. I jumped on board to help him given that long initial conversation we had in the garden over many cups of coffee behind Deep Cove General Store.
And since then, I made a friend along the way. And his family and friends became my friends – he is surrounded and supported by good people. That says something to me. And I trust him.
Throughout the years, I have becoming increasingly impressed with his listening and speaking skills. He listens to people and has meaningful discussions on a wide variety of topics and with different groups and types of people. He is a straight shooter when he needs to be and speaks in a manner that is always respectful.
In a time where we are often used to seven second sound bites, Geoff can give those but he is also hesitant to give such a response when an issue requires a fulsome and engaging debate before an issue can be decided on. From someone who teaches public policy and policy analysis, I want to see this type of discussion in the public sphere. He often asks those difficult questions and thank goodness he does. We are a better community for it.
He is very knowledgeable on many topics and critically assesses the many topics he deals with. He is not just a rubber stamper – he reads and does the research he needs to do and does so to make a well-informed and practical decision with the best interests of the community in mind – the community now and in the future.
He works very well with others and that is what I think any community needs – a team player who works well with others whether that be other councilors, other orders of government, the business community, nonprofit organizations, and residents in general.
So that is why I am helping Geoff again in this campaign. I truly believe he makes decisions based on community interests. I also support the concept that while results are important, the process is as well – and Geoff makes decisions in a collaborative, evidence-based, and inclusive manner.
So Geoff, this is why I am supporting you.”