About Barbara

Open - Transparent – Responsible Leadership

I believe the role of a councillor is part service and part leadership. Guelph needs leadership who cares, is approachable, and who will provide good governance.

I love Guelph, and I love our Ward 1. My goal is to work towards making Guelph an even better place to live. The key to doing this is with you, the community because the solutions are here with the residents of Guelph. I will listen to you, I will represent you, I will work with you.  I will work collaboratively with other councilors and city staff to address what affects you every day.

Being an engaged citizen has always been important to me. This has been shown through my work and volunteer history. My experience spans the corporate, institutional, labour and not-for-profit sectors.The privilege to work, study and travel abroad has given me first hand experience and the ability to observe the best, and worst Guelph can become.

We all want a safe, liveable and affordable Guelph.

My involvement throughout Guelph provides me an in-depth understanding of why people choose to make this wonderful city their home; the key issues and many community solutions.   These experiences, combined with my love for Guelph, made running for council the next logical step. I will use my experience to help you understand how and why your money is spent. I am ready to work towards an open and better approach to infrastructure and capital projects.

Our Place. Our City. Our Way of Life.

I am committed to public participation that means something. I will listen to you and represent you at City Council. I will continue to work with you for sustainability: economic vitality, reliable transportation, protecting and maintaining our natural environment, employment, culture, heritage, social integrity, safety,  and, energy security – to improving our way of life and maintaining Guelph's great reputation.

Click here to read my platform


I was born and raised in Guelph. My parents always demonstrated how civic engagement had constructive outcomes. My father (university professor) and my mother (a social worker) along with others, helped start the first recycling system in Guelph - long before the province’s blue box system.  My mother collaborated with friends to start the first day care (Willow Road) and mental health association in Guelph.

Their passion for participatory democracy gave me the confidence, at an early age, to also take part in my community. Throughout high school and University, I started committees and clubs to address various needs.  I have always prioritized fiscal responsibility; a sense of belonging; advocated for social justice and diversity; protection of the environment, and supported the arts, culture and heritage.

Past Leadership Roles include:

  • Steering Committee, Smart Guelph, City of Guelph
  • Founding member of the Race Relations Group at the University of Guelph which resulted in the Human Rights and Equity Office and associated policies.
  • Secured permanent campus space for the Mature Students Association, UofG
  • Board member and member liaison of Guelph Community Car Co-op
  • Board member and Volunteer Coordinator of the Guelph Jazz Festival
  • Market/Community Outreach Coordinator Hillside Festival
  • Volunteer with Ceilidhs Guelph
  • Volunteer Mediator, Guelph Courts

Current Leadership Roles and memberships:

  • Founding and continued Member of the The Ward Residents’ Association
  • Volunteer Committee Hillside Festival
  • Advisory Committee member of Guelph Black Heritage Society
  • Co-coordinator Jane’s Walk Guelph, an annual event during which volunteers share what they love about Guelph during a walking conversation.
  • Member of Wellington Water Watchers, Friends of the Library

As a “planning geek”, I have always participated in city run public input sessions. In 1990’s the province of Ontario mandated that cities re-zone their inner city industrial lands as incentive for future re–location of these industries.  Residents’ voices mattered and I jumped in. It was an incredible time as the first vertical intensification was being proposed in the downtown core. The City Council, staff and citizens all had a similar vision for the city zoned for protection of heritage, limited heights and connecting active transportation nodes on these lands. Together we found innovative solutions to local challenges. Examples being Guelph’s first wet-dry recycling plant and, the timber covered bridge over the Speed River. In 2001, I was asked to be a member of the City of Guelph Smart Guelph Steering Committee.  For 2 years we engaged local residents to find out how they wanted to see their city grow and develop. During this period I worked hard to ensure that we engaged a diversity of voices. The vision the community created was one of a safe, connected community with a vital economy and protected natural spaces. Sound familiar? Then came the Green Belt and Places to Grow Act. Again, I participated in City of Guelph charrettes, and weighed in on the development of the Official Plan.

I believe in applying best practices and in bringing your voice to council so that we have a safe and livable city. Along with you, I want to continue to make Guelph the best city it can be.

If my values are your values, vote with your values On October 22nd. Elect me to advocate for you at City Hall. I am listening.


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