City Council

Welcome to Creative Calgary’s information on City Councillors elected during the Calgary 2021 General Election. Creative Calgary’s goal is to educate citizens on the extent to which elected officials share a view that fosters support and strong investment in the arts sector, and that support is critical in building a vibrant and prosperous city. 

To read about Creative Calgary's process in researching each official, click here.​

In response to our survey to City Councillors, officials had the opportunity to declare their position on public investment in the arts. Here are the results:

  • 53% of elected officials have committed to prioritizing finding strategic ways
    to increase investment in the arts sector.

  • 33% of elected officials did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

  • 13% of elected officials believe municipal investment in the arts should be maintained at its current level.

  • 0% of elected officials believe that cuts should be made to municipal investment in the arts.

Mayor of Calgary

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JYOTI GONDEK

Mayor of Calgary

Position on public investment in the arts: Jyoti Gondek selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "The arts and culture scene in our city has been taken for granted and treated like a charitable cause for too long. We relied on corporations and philanthropists to fund the arts, neglecting our responsibility to the sector as a municipal government. Calgary’s economic recovery requires a successful creative sector."

Campaign website: www.jyotigondek.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/mayor.html

Contact: themayor@calgary.ca

City Council

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SONYA SHARP

Ward 1 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Sonya Sharp did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Personal arts statement: Sonya Sharp did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Campaign website: www.sonyasharp.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-1/warddefault.html

Contact: ward01@calgary.ca

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JENNIFER WYNESS

Ward 2 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Jennifer Wyness selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector.

Personal arts statement: "A city that embraces the arts whether music, visual, theatrical, film, architecture, or any other innovative form of self expression is a more connected, creative and engaging city. The arts connect Calgarians and we need to focus on strengthening our arts community."

Campaign website: www.jenniferwyness.com

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-2/warddefault.html

Contact: ward02@calgary.ca

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JASMINE MIAN

Ward 3 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Jasmine Mian selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "The arts enrich our lives, express our vibrant cultures, and brings us together as a community. Building and supporting our vibrant arts community is essential to Calgary’s future as an economically thriving world-class city."

Campaign website: www.jasmine4ward3.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-3/warddefault.html

Contact: ward03@calgary.ca

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SEAN CHU

Ward 4 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Sean Chu did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Personal arts statement: Sean Chu did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Campaign website: www.seanchu.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-4/warddefault.html

Contact: ward04@calgary.ca

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RAJ DHALIWAL

Ward 5 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Raj Dhaliwal selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "Calgary needs to continue to be a place that attracts new industry, and young people to choose to make a life here. Investing in our city, the amenities and industries that enhance our quality of life are crucial for achieving our best future. The Arts bring enormous economic value but also cultural value to our City. I strongly support doing what I can to enhance access and support a thriving Arts scene in our city."

Campaign website: www.voteraj.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-5/warddefault.html

Contact: ward05@calgary.ca

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RICHARD POOTMANS

Ward 6 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Richard Pootmans did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Personal arts statement: Richard Pootmans did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Campaign website: 

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-6/warddefault.html

Contact: ward06@calgary.ca

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TERRY WONG

Ward 7 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Terry Wong selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."
Personal arts statement: "Calgary's public art scene has been dotted with controversy by the public with issues of type of art, funding amount, location of artist, etc. I believe a vibrant Calgary is a beautiful that is rich with art in places where that can be appreciated. I will advocate for continuance of the 2022 funding commitment and discuss ways to support art funding in the 2023-2026 budget cycle."

Campaign website: www.terrywong.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-7/warddefault.html

Contact: ward07@calgary.ca

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COURTNEY WALCOTT

Ward 8 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Courtney Walcott selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "There is a clear fiscal argument to the arts. A vibrant arts and creative sectors is an integral part of a thriving economy. However, I think this sells the significance of the arts short. Someone smart told me that "The arts help us preserve our humanity." As I look at our current world, we need this more than ever."

Campaign website: www.courtneywalcott.com

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-8/warddefault.html

Contact: ward08@calgary.ca

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GIAN-CARLO CARRA

Ward 9 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Gian-Carlo Carra Chiang selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "A vibrant arts sector is foundational to Calgary’s best future. The arts contribute massively to our economy and quality of life, they make our city worth visiting, worth moving to, and they are the origins of the stories we tell ourselves about who we want to become."

Campaign website: www.carra4ward9.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-9/warddefault.html

Contact: ward09@calgary.ca

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ANDRE CHABOT

Ward 10 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Andre Chabot did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Personal arts statement: Andre Chabot did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Campaign website: www.andrechabot.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-10/warddefault.html

Contact: ward10@calgary.ca

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KOURTNEY PENNER

Ward 11 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Kourtney Penner selected, "I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector."

Personal arts statement: "Calgarians are increasingly seeking more interactive, local art as part of the fabric of their communities. Supporting local artists to bring this vibrancy into neighbourhoods will foster our sense of belonging, spirit, and pride in our city. Celebrating our art is important to our future success."

Campaign website: www.co11aborate.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-11/warddefault.html

Contact: ward11@calgary.ca

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EVAN SPENCER

Ward 12 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Evan Spencer selected, "I believe Calgary currently has many important civic priorities, including the arts. Current municipal investment in the arts is sufficient and should be maintained at its current level."

Personal arts statement: "The arts is very important to a thriving municipality. I would focus on protecting funding at its current levels with a priority on supporting local artists. I would love to see The City offering matching grants with the goal of increasing civic pride and ownership in our City."

City website: www.evanspencer.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-12/warddefault.html

Contact: ward12@calgary.ca

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DAN McLEAN

Ward 13 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Dan McLean selected, "I believe Calgary currently has many important civic priorities, including the arts. Current municipal investment in the arts is sufficient and should be maintained at its current level."

Personal arts statement: "The Arts are critical to any thriving City. Providing opportunities for LOCAL artists to thrive should be central to any Municipal Planning and funding. If we are to spend local resources to have a thriving art scene, it should be focused on local talent."

Campaign website: www.danmclean.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-13/warddefault.html

Contact: ward13@calgary.ca

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PETER DEMONG

Ward 14 City Councillor

Position on public investment in the arts: Peter Demong did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Personal arts statement: Peter Demong did not respond to Creative Calgary's request for information.

Campaign website: www.peterdemong.ca

City website: www.calgary.ca/citycouncil/ward-14/warddefault.html

Contact: ward14@calgary.ca

Research

In researching each candidate, Creative Calgary looked at three different factors:

1. Position on Public Investment in the Arts

Creative Calgary reached out to each candidate with our Case for the Arts about the power of the arts to build a great city, along with a survey that asked the following question: 

 

Given what you know about the importance of the arts in building a competitive, prosperous city, please choose which of the following statements best aligns with your stance on the issue.
 

  1. I believe a thriving, prosperous city must have a vibrant arts scene in order to succeed. The municipal government should prioritize finding strategic ways to increase investment in the arts sector.

  2. I believe Calgary currently has many important civic priorities, including the arts. Current municipal investment in the arts is sufficient and should be maintained at its current level.

  3. I believe that the arts are a nice-to-have, not a need-to-have for Calgary. As Calgary recovers from low oil prices and the effects of the pandemic, cuts should be made to municipal arts funding.

 

2. Personal Arts Statement

In Creative Calgary’s candidate survey, we also gave candidates the opportunity to make a statement about the arts in their own words. Those who chose to do so have their statements included.

 

Creative Calgary has in no way altered candidates' statements, including making corrections to spelling, grammar or other typography errors.

3. Positive Arts Platforms

Creative Calgary volunteers reviewed the platforms that each candidate has made publicly available via an official website and indicated those whose platforms include a positive mention of the arts (e.g., new arts funding, the arts’ important role in building a vibrant or prosperous city, etc.).

Please note that Creative Calgary specifically looked for the term “arts” or a mention of specific arts organizations, sectors or districts (e.g., Arts Commons, music industry, film industry, entertainment district, etc.), and made no assumptions that the candidates' use of words like “culture,” “recreation,” “downtown,” or “amenities” include the arts.

 

Candidate platforms were reviewed in mid-September, so please note that candidates may have released additional platforms since then that may not be reflected here. 

Non-Endorsement Statement:

Creative Calgary is grateful to the individuals, foundations, corporations, and other entities whose generous support enables us to develop and expand our work with and on behalf of our community.

The individual opinions and financial contributions of Creative Calgary Steering Committee members, staff, volunteers and supporters do not reflect the views of Creative Calgary. Individuals are not permitted to use their affiliation with Creative Calgary when supporting or endorsing candidates.

Creative Calgary does not support, endorse or oppose any political candidates, financially or otherwise.