10/18/2013 09:52 EDT | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST

Sonia Bitar for Edmonton Ward 11

Sonia's Platform

I am excited about this opportunity to serve my community. I came to Edmonton 37 years ago with my husband Souheil and my 3 children: Shafic, Marc and Robin. We fell in love with Edmonton and never left. My professional background, I served as the Citizenship Judge for Northern AB, Executive Director of Changing Together, a centre for immigrant women, and the Public affairs officer with Transport Canada.

Our community has evolved through significant changes and the city of Edmonton has remained open and positive. When elected I will work hard to include a diversity of voices in the upcoming review and update of our Official Community Plan.

Edmonton's many competitive advantages including; clean air and water, a spectacular natural setting, our historic downtown, amazing recreation facilities, vibrant arts and culture scene, excellent schools and medical services all maintain a very high quality of life.

As an Edmontonian and a resident of Mill woods for the last 33 years I have an understanding of the challenges we face and the opportunities we can embrace to make lasting improvements. I have the passion and the vision to work with council, staff and citizens in a respectful manner and make Edmonton an even better place to live.

I have spent the past sixteen weeks researching, reading and getting myself up to speed with current issues and city policies. During my canvassing, I talked with many residents in Ward 11 and have a good understanding of citizen concerns. The more I talk to people, the more I want to hear what Edmonton means to them and what issues they feel are important.

Throughout this election there has been a lot of talk about business, sustainability and the influence of advocacy groups on council which are all important issues but I would like to take this time to point out some other important issues that I believe need to be addressed. Issues such as: safe transportation, affordable childcare; affordable housing; safe & accessible housing for our seniors; and additional programs & activities for our youth.

As a city councillor, I pledge to be transparent, honest, and I promise to work tirelessly on your behalf. I will stand up for what you believe is best for our city. I will be the councillor that listens and takes affirmative action.

Building relationships, collaborating with council colleagues to ensure our City of Edmonton remains a vibrant, friendly, healthy community is most important as we embrace the future.

On October 21, make your vote count and vote Sonia Bitar