FV: Hi Winnie, thank you for accepting our interview. We want our website to be the platform for voters to understand the running candidate’s opinions. So could you give a brief introduction of yourself?
Winnie: Sure, my name is Winnie Siu. I grew up in Vancouver. I have lived in Vancouver most of my life except when I attended universities in Edmonton, Alberta and London, Ontario. I am a professional Engineer, specifically Transportation Engineering, from University of Alberta. I also have a MBA from Ivey Business School, one of the top Canadian business schools. I have done transportation engineering consulting work in private consulting and in all levels of government. I was also an investment banker and now I am in a financial capacity for a large corporation. Aside from my professional career, I was one of the founding members of a community theatre, Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre. We produced quite a number of plays and were shown all around Greater Vancouver and I sat on the board for a long time. I was also a board member of another community theatre as well. I live with my husband here in Marpole. I have a dog and my husband and I like to take our dog out to walk around various parks in Vancouver.
FV: Could you also give an introduction of the Park Board in Vancouver?
Winnie: The park board is very unique and one of a kind and only in Vancouver. It was originally formed to run Stanley Park. The current Park Board is responsible for all the parks, all the facilities in the parks, even community centres, and all the beaches. And many people don’t know that all the trees on street boulevard are also managed by the Park Board. FV: So what do you think are the current problems or challenges among the Park Board? Winnie: We, the Coalition Vancouver, one of our platforms is to work with the community, the neighbourhoods and community centres to make sure the volunteerism continues and the aging facilities get improved. We also want to make sure all the parks are clean and all needles get handled. We will make sure the parks are accessible to everyone. And for everyone to enjoy the parks, we will make the parking free again, Monday to Friday. I will also check on the financial books to help the board become more efficient on resources and if we could decrease the cost. We will do a facilities audit to make sure we have sufficient facilities in various neighbourhoods around town.
FV: So if you were elected, what would your solution for the problems and challenges that you just mentioned?
Winnie: Different communities have different issues. We will listen to the community and identify the issue then resolve it. For example, the Marpole community centre is the oldest community centre, so it definitely needs to be improved. And Vancouver residents want more dog parks.
FV: We also want to know what is your motivation for running?
Winnie: Thank you for asking that. There are a few things. First, we have a huge population of dogs but we don’t have enough dog friendly parks in Vancouver so I want to endeavor to increase the number of dog friendly parks in Vancouver as it allows a safe environment for dogs to play, dog parents to control their dogs while avoiding potential conflicts with people who don’t like dogs and further, dog parks promote community well-being. Second, I am an active community gardener, so I want to promote urban gardening because it will improve local food source while providing healthy and organic vegetables. Thirdly, as an aspiring mycologist (study of fungi) I am also very interested in studying the nature. Those are the reasons why I want to run for the park board.
FV: Thank you!