Owen Sound author, videographer and community activist Richard Thomas is running for council in the October municipal elections.

A political foray by Thomas had long been rumoured and was confirmed yesterday when he filed his papers with the clerk's office.

A former TV news reporter, Thomas has been involved in the community for decades, he noted in a news release. He has been a member of the board of the Owen Sound and North Grey Union Public Library for 11 years, seven of those as its chair.

"The library board is comprised of members from our partner municipalities, so I have lots of experience working with our neighbours," Thomas said in announcing his campaign. "I see that as an important skill if Owen Sound is to move forward. Few municipalities can afford to stand alone in this economic climate, so good relations with our neighbours are essential."

Richard-Thomas-regIn addition to his work with the library board, Thomas sits on the Owen Sound Hospital Foundation board and is a strong supporter of local health care, he said in the media release. "He was also involved in the successful MRI campaign and the Regional Recreation Centre Campaign; he is presently a member of the Communications Team for The Hospital Campaign, which is raising funds for cancer care at the Owen Sound Regional Hospital," the release stated.

This last year Thomas led the Community Waterfront Heritage Centre, a citizens' group that was successful in its bid to save the Marine and Rail Museum. "We need to be tenacious in protecting what's left of our history," he said in the campaign release. "Culture, the arts and heritage are also important keys to building Owen Sound's brand as a tourist destination. I also believe that the Owen Sound harbour is an untapped resource. Council needs to lead the way to its redevelopment."

"I've been around politics long enough to know that making promises is dangerous, but I can say without hesitation that I will listen and look at all sides of each issue to make decisions that are in the best interests of this community," Thomas was quoted as saying in the release.

"I believe that Owen Sound can be more than it is. In making my announcement today I'd like to to challenge other members of our community who agree with me to get involved. Our city needs new energy and ideas."



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