Taking back the Canada she was proud of is one of the driving factors for Red Deer’s new Liberal Party candidate.
“The biggest motivator is, as a Canadian, I feel as though my Canadianism has been under assault for the last number of years,” said Chandra Kastern.
“I have always been really proud to be Canadian and decreasingly less so, particularly over the last five years. I want my son to grow up with that same sense of Canadian pride I had growing up.”
Kastern, executive director of the Red Deer Symphony Orchestra, was nominated by acclamation Sunday evening by the party.
“I got home and I was a little shaky. I thought ‘what did I just do?’” said Kastern with a laugh.
“At the same time I’m super excited. There was no Liberal candidate in Red Deer-Mountain View and I thought it was really important that there was that representation for people.”
She and Jeffrey Rock, minister of Gaetz Memorial United Church, are the Liberal candidates in the two Red Deer riding, which split the city in half.
Kastern said the two candidates will open up their campaign headquarters later this week. The office will be located beside Famoso Neopolitan Pizzeria at 5016 51st Ave. They are hopeful the office will open by Thursday.
Kastern has a background in policy development and governance and has put these skills forward for consideration on election day.
“I’m the only woman running in Red Deer-Mountain View,” said Kastern. “Women in politics is important to highlight and be a part of.
“There’s quite a process to get to the point of being nominated, so I’ve been sitting on this for weeks. So I’m excited to just be out there and starting my campaign.”
Running against Kastern are Red Deer MP Earl Dreeshen for the Conservatives, city councillor Paul Harris for the NDP, Evan Bedford for the Green Party and James Walper for the Libertarian Party.
Election day is Oct. 19.