Peace Wapiti Public School Division (PWPSD) is pleased to announce the official results of the 2021 Public School Board Elections, held on Monday, October 18, 2021.

Re-elected for the 2021-2025 term are incumbents Wendy Kelm in Ward 5, representing Grande Prairie West and Wembley, and Stefanie Clarke in Ward 7, representing Grande Prairie East and Grovedale. Newcomer Martine Piebiak joins the Board as the newly elected Trustee in Ward 1, representing Eaglesham, Woking and Rycroft.

Ms. Piebiak won the Ward 1 election with 374 votes, or 58 per cent of the 646 votes. The remaining 272 votes went to former Trustee Kari Scheers.

In Ward 5, Ms. Kelm took the win with 311 votes, or 51 per cent of the 605 votes. Of the remaining 294 votes, 217 went to Lynn Driedger, while Cameron Donald came in third with 77.

Residents of Ward 7 re-elected incumbent Stefanie Clarke with 369 votes, or 65 per cent of the 568 votes. The remaining 199 votes went to Lisa Arlint. The results, provided by Returning Officer JoAnn Vanstone, were deemed official at noon today, Friday, October 22, 2021, under the Local Authorities Election Act.

As a new Trustee, Ms. Martine Piebiak is excited to meet new people and gain a broader perspective on education. While learning about all PWPSD schools, she is focusing on the issues rural schools face. With the recent pandemic, Ms. Piebiak says she wants to support reconnection within school communities and help parents deal with their concerns in a productive way.

“All students matter, their needs and learning need to be at the centre of our decision making. I know important decisions lie ahead and I have a lot to learn. I am thankful for all the support I have received during the election.”

Trustee Wendy Kelm and her husband own and operate a small oilfield business, and have three grown children and four grandchildren. She also co-owns and operates a clothing store with her daughters. Since her children are PWPSD graduates, and three of her grandchildren are current PWPSD students, she has a strong bond with the Division. Ever since moving to the Wembley area 32 years ago, Ms. Kelm has been heavily active in her community as a member of the Wembley Minor Hockey Association, Wembley Elementary, the Helen E. Taylor School Council, and the Family and Community Support Services Board. She is looking forward to continuing her role as Trustee on the PWPSD Board as she begins her fifth term.

“I am so honoured to be able to represent Ward 5 again. Thanks to everyone who came out to vote. During the next four years I will continue to work with the County of Grande Prairie to secure land for the replacement school for PWA, to be a strong voice for all students of PWPSD and continue to build strong relationships within my school communities. I will advocate and lobby the government to ensure adequate funding for rural education like transportation and mental health supports remain a priority.”

Ms. Stefanie Clarke and her family are residents of Grovedale with deep roots in the area. She is passionate about the community, volunteering with the Grovedale Figure Skating Club for the past 12 years, and throughout the community when she can. She is excited to begin her third term as the voice for Ward 7 students and families and will continue to advocate for the enhancement of all aspects of the student experience across the division. She is looking forward to tackling some big hurdles like the Peace Wapiti Academy replacement school and the Draft curriculum. She believes open transparent communication is the key to success.

“I am grateful and honoured to be supported by this great community to continue advocating for our students and families. I will work hard for continued improvements to their education and the education system across Alberta.”

Acclaimed newcomers Martine Piebiak, Ward 1, Blaine Riding, Ward 2, Dwayne Speager, Ward 4, and Millie Turner, Ward 8, along with incumbents Lori Grant, Wendy Kelm, Dale Crane, Stefanie Clarke, and Dana McIntosh – representing Wards 3, 5, 6, 7, and 9 respectively – will be officially sworn in during the Organizational Meeting of the new Board at PWPSD Central Office at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 28, 2021. The first regular meeting of the new Board will follow at 11:00 a.m.

Information provided by the Peace Wapiti Public School Division