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Second candidate enters race to become Orillia’s mayor

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In Candidates / Election 2018
Jul 26th, 2018
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Gord Launchbury

Gord Launchbury

By Dave Dawson Orillia Matters 

Gord Launchbury, who twice ran for city council, will challenge Steve Clarke; deadline to enter fray is tomorrow at 2 p.m.
about 17 hours ago by: Dave DawsonOrillia now has a mayor’s race.

Steve Clarke, the incumbent, announced more than a month ago that he was seeking a second term as mayor. Today, just 24 hours before nominations are set to close, a candidate has joined the fray to ensure Clarke is not acclaimed.

Gordon Launchbury, who has run unsuccessfully as a city council candidate in the past two elections, has decided to run for the city’s top job.

While he wants to wait until everything is official before conducting media interviews, the Facebook page he created when he ran for Ward 2 in 2014, notes Launchbury retired from Dorr Oliver Long/GL&V/FLSmidth after 43 years as a manager and engineering technician.

The long-time Ward 2 resident is a “committed and compassionate community volunteer, both through the Anglican Church and various local organizations,” notes his Facebook page.

According to that site, Launchbury wants to enhance Orillia’s growing education economy, supports a transportation terminal in the downtown core, is an avid supporter of community green spaces and hopes to expand Orillia’s manufacturing base.

In summary, he says on his Facebook page: “I’m not doing this for myself. I’ve enjoyed being a citizen of this fair city all these years. I see its potential for the future, and I’ve got the time to put into it.”

The race to become a city councillor in Orillia is also heating up as the deadline to run – tomorrow at 2 p.m. – inches closer. The municipal election will be held Oct. 22.

Many citizens have stepped up in recent days to throw their hat in the ring and to challenge the incumbents in each of Orillia’s electoral wards. The top two vote-getters in each ward earn a spot at the city council table for a four-year term.

To date, 18 citizens have declared their intention to run.

In Ward 1, Ted Emond is seeking re-election. David Campbell and Ken Abbott are also candidates in the ward.

In Ward 2, both incumbents – Ralph Cipolla and Rob Kloostra – are seeking another term. Tshweu Moleme and Harold Dougall are hoping to unseat the veterans.

Mason Ainsworth is seeking a second term in Ward 3. Also running in that ward are Jay Fallis, Betsy Gross and Fior Tucci.

There is a crowded field of candidates in Ward 4. Incumbents Pat Hehn and Tim Lauer are hoping to return to their posts but will have to beat out five challengers: Peter Hislop, Stephanie Kenny, Ed Novosky, Andrew Shuttleworth and Richard Weese.

For more information about running in this fall’s municipal election, visit www.orillia.ca and head to the election page.

Once the nomination deadline closes tomorrow, OrilliaMatters will publish the final slate of candidates of those seeking office in October’s municipal election.

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