Release. A group of Abbotsford non-profit organizations announced today that they will be hosting both a Council Townhall and a Mayoral Debate on Tuesday, October 21st and Thursday, October 23rd, respectively.
The event is being organized collectively by Abbotsford Community Services, Abbotsford Community Foundation, Abbotsford Arts Council, MSA Museum Society, The Reach Gallery Museum,
The Fraser Valley Conservancy, The Women’s Resource Society and The United Way Fraser Valley. It will focus on three key areas: arts & culture, the environment, and social services. This is an opportunity to engage candidates in a dialogue – recognizing that the non-profit sector enhances the quality of life for our residents; contributes to the health and well-being of our community; and the need for a cooperative, collaborative vision that will guide Abbotsford toward a more sustainable future.
The two evenings will be distinctly different from one-another. At the Council Townhall questions prepared by the organizing committee, comprised of representatives from all the host organizations, will be directed to candidates. Then members of the audience will have an opportunity to ask one, 30-second question to a specific candidate. The candidate will have 60 seconds to respond. The evening will follow a similar format to a public-hearing, with individuals asked to form a line and wait for their respective turns. Candidates will also have one-minute at the end of the meeting to make closing remarks.
During the Mayoral Debate, questions prepared by the organizing committee, will be directed to the candidates. All the questions will be asked by the moderator who will give each candidate two minutes to respond. Each candidate will also have five rebuttal opportunities and two-minutes at the end of the meeting to make closing remarks.
Moderating both evenings is Justin P. Goodrich, Managing Partner of Giesbrecht, Goodrich & Co.; an Abbotsford based advocacy, communications and public & government relations firm. Goodrich – who has spent over a decade in community media as a political and public affairs newspaper columnist, radio host and television host – is no stranger to the role of moderator, having previously facilitated various town-hall meetings and all-candidates debates.
Both events will be held at the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. and proceedings beginning at 7:00 pm. Both evenings will end at approximately 9:30 p.m.