I have served as a Nanaimo City Councillor for the past four years.
Prior to my election to Council I gained civic experience through three years as a member of the City of Nanaimo Parks Recreation and Culture Commission.
During that time I chaired the Parks Committee and the Harewood Dry Floor Facility Committee. I also sat on the City’s Grants Advisory Committee, and am on the Nanaimo Sports Hall of Fame Committee.
As a City Councillor, I have chaired the Public Safety Committee and the Nanaimo Parks, Recreation, and Wellness Committee. I am an alternate to the Community Planning Committee.
I am one of the City representatives on the Regional District of Nanaimo board, where I was elected as vice-chair in 2016. As an RDN member I sit on the Regional Parks and Trails Committee and chair the Liquid Waste Management Plan Committee.
During my four-year term I have gained professional development by attending annual meetings of the Association of Vancouver Island Coastal Communities, the Union of British Columbia Municipalities, and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Among other conferences I attend each year is the Vancouver Island Economic Summit. I have also benefitted from attending workshops sponsored by the Local Government Leadership Academy.
My experiences have given me many opportunities to demonstrate leadership skills, to learn about proper principles of governance, and to work cooperatively as part of a team.
My past four years on Council have given me valuable insight and knowledge of the challenges and opportunities facing our beautiful city. I have learned a lot. I have met many wonderful people. And it has been an honour for me to represent the City of Nanaimo. I ask for your support in letting me continue to do so.
I am proud to be a third-generation Nanaimoite. Though my mother was born here, I was raised in Victoria and attended the University of Victoria. While growing up I spent many holidays in Nanaimo with my cousins and other relatives, then did summer work in Nanaimo during my university years. Following graduation from UVic in 1974, I moved back to Nanaimo and have lived here ever since. I have a B.A. and Diploma in Education from UVic, and an M.A. in educational leadership from San Diego State University.
In 2010, I retired following a 35-year career as a teacher and school administrator – all of it here in Nanaimo, working in all areas of the city.
Along with teaching I worked in local broadcasting for many years here in Nanaimo for CHUB and CKEG radio stations, as well as volunteer work with Shaw Cable. For nearly forty years I have written a weekly community sports column – “The Thorpe Report” – in the Nanaimo New Bulletin paper, and continue to enjoy this activity. I currently do contract work for the Justice Institute of British Columbia.
In all of my endeavours, I have been fortunate to have the support of my wonderful wife Ruth and our family.
Over the years I have been involved in many local sports organizations as a coach, official, and executive member. I have had the honour of being president of Junior Babe Ruth Baseball, the Nanaimo Curling Club, and the Nanaimo Lawn Bowling Club. I am an Honourary Lifetime Member of the Nanaimo and District Youth Soccer Association. I have been involved in all three B.C. Summer Games hosted in Nanaimo, most recently as Sergeant-at-Arms for the Games in 2014. Also, in 2014 I had the privilege of receiving a Community Sports Hero Award from Sport B.C.
I have served as a director of the Nanaimo Harbour City Seniors. I am also proud to be a member of the Royal Canadian Legion, and am a Paul Harris Fellow of the Rotary Club of Nanaimo North. Among other volunteer work, I am a coordinator of the News Bulletin’s “Coins for Kids” charity fundraiser.
Recreational activities that I enjoy include reading, curling, lawn bowling, jogging, and golfing.