2018 Election

Waterloo Region District School Board

Headquarters: Kitchener
Voting Regions: 4
Total Trustee Seats Available: 11

City of Cambridge, Township of North Dumfries

Number of Available Seats: 3
  • Image of Kemesha ALLI
    Kemesha ALLI
    About Me:

    I am a Communications professional, Social Justice Advocate, and Entrepreneur – with a diverse background in education, health care, social services, business, arts and culture, and the nonprofit sector. A mother of two young girls, and a Candidate for Master of Public Service at the University of Waterloo.
    I am actively involved with ‘Our Voice Our Turn’ – a movement advocating for youth that have aged out of the Foster Care System, transitioning on their road to independence and adulthood. I currently serve on a few other community boards. My goal as a School Board Trustee is to Foster New Perspectives for Tomorrow’s Generation. For more information about me and my run for WRDSB Trustee, please visit

  • Placeholder image of Eian CAMPBELL
  • Placeholder image of John J. DIDECZEK
    John J. DIDECZEK
  • Placeholder image of Cassandra EAGLES
    Cassandra EAGLES
  • Image of Jayne HERRING
    Jayne HERRING
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    About Me:

    I recently retired from a 31 year career with the Waterloo Region District School Board where I served as the Manager of Corporate Services and the Board's Parliamentarian. This experience has provided me with the opportunity to observe, learn and reflect on how I could make a difference. I would be honoured to use my knowledge and experience to benefit the students, parents and community members of Cambridge and North Dumfries. More

  • Placeholder image of William G. SCHNEIDER
    William G. SCHNEIDER
  • Placeholder image of Cam STEWART
  • Image of Courtney WATERFALL
    Courtney WATERFALL
    About Me:

    I have served as WRDSB trustee for Cambridge & North Dumfries for the past year. Prior to serving as a trustee, I was a volunteer in my children’s school for several years as well as volunteering on some board committees. I am active in our community, volunteering for different organizations and I am a small business owner. I would be honored to continue serving Cambridge & North Dumfries as a trustee with the Waterloo Region District School Board. More

  • Image of Cindy WATSON
    Cindy WATSON
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    About Me:

    I was born and raised in the beautiful city of Cambridge. I have had the privilege of serving the residents of Waterloo Region as a Waterloo Regional District School Board trustee for 18 years. I am a wife, mother and grandmother. I work in the healthcare field and started a community fitness group through my church.

    I was a former WRDSB Vice Chair, Ontario Public School Board Association Director, OPSBA Policy member, chaired committees, including boundary committee, expulsion and suspension. I have also served on numerous committees, Mental Health and Well Being, Budget, Suspension and Expulsion, Special Education and Advisory Group and several Ad Hoc committee

    I will continue to ensure that the academic success, and well-being of every student be the center of our decision making processes.

    I will continue to bring students, parents and staff voices to the board table, and make sure that students, parents and staff be included and contribute in meaningful ways in WRDSB decision making processes.

    I will continue to advocate for students with special needs that would help them reach their full potential.

    I will continue to make school safety and mental health support initiatives a priority.

    I believe in servant leadership, and doing my best to "treat others the way I would like to be treated".

    I consistently bring constituents concerns forward at the board table. As an elected representative I believe that it is a privilege and an honor to serve constituents.

    I am a strong advocate of student, parent and staff involvement and engagement. I support the use of surveys, focus groups and participation on committees which contribute to meaningful discussion and input. I believe boards make better policy when students, parents and staff are involved in the decisions making process.

    I believe all voices are equally valuable, and have the right to be heard. Different opinions help develop our own opinions, and promote understanding. Embracing diversity of opinion will ensure higher level decision making.

    According to the Education Act the board is responsible for the academic performance and well-being of students. Ultimate success is demonstrated by students who achieve their full potential, students with disabilities are given the best support, parents are treated as partners and encouraged to participate in their child's education, and staff that have been given adequate resources and feel supported. When these are in alignment and unified everyone is successful, and students realize their full potential.

    It is my commitment to promote new and creative ideas, and solutions by demonstrating a culture of freedom. Freedom that allows the sharing of different ideas and opinions in a respectful manner, realizing that "everyone" plays a part and no contribution is insignificant.

  • Placeholder image of Crystal WHETHAM
    Crystal WHETHAM
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City of Kitchener

Number of Available Seats: 4
  • Image of Samantha Marie Oliveira ESTOESTA
    Samantha Marie Oliveira ESTOESTA
    About Me:

    Brief Biography: Over the last 10 years, I have consistently been involved in initiatives, projects, programs and organizations that aim to better the lives of students, not only in Waterloo Region, but across the country. In 2018, I a recipient of the Province of Ontario's Leading Women, Building Communities award for the riding of Kitchener-Waterloo. As a soon-to-be parent, I am excited at the opportunity to be a Kitchener Trustee and focus on improving and supporting students and our educational system in Waterloo Region. More

  • Image of Xiaoming GUO
    Xiaoming GUO
    About Me:

    Xiaoming Guo believes that our school is playing a key function to uphold our Canadian Multiculturalism. Young people are the future of the world, and education will prepare our youth for the future.

    Xiaoming Guo has a Ph.D. degree from McGill University and an MBA degree from Queen's University. He taught at different colleges including Wilfrid Laurier University.

    Xiaoming Guo advocates more cultural activities to promote the diversity and inclusiveness of our schools and our multiculturalism society. Humanist self-realization is not only about wealth, knowledge and skills, but also about mental health and moral perfection.

  • Image of Brent HUTZAL
    Brent HUTZAL
    About Me:

    Education and well-being of children and youth are important issues in my home, as I am a college professor and my wife is a local pediatrician. We have two daughters, 8 and 3, and as such, your concerns are also my concerns - and will remain my concerns for years to come.

    Funding for public education will be a crucial topic over the next term. I have my CPA accounting designation and my MBA and teach accounting and business courses - it will be a priority of mine to assist trustees (and the community) in becoming more engaged in the budget process.

    I am a proud member of the community. I have extensive community leadership, governance, and volunteer experience with WRDSB, Special Olympics, City of Kitchener, Autism Calgary, Emmanuel at Brighton Child Care Centre, Futurpreneur, and many other tremendous organizations.

    I have a proven track record of working well with others - I am a team player and a team-builder and will work to eliminate further trustee conflict. I would be honoured to have your support and to be your voice at the board table.

  • Image of David KUHN
    David KUHN
    About Me:

    Born and raised in Kitchener, I am currently a self-employed consultant and previously, until the recent provincial election, worked for a former Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) as a Constituency Assistant. I also serve as Board Chair of a local non-profit agency and registered charity for adults with physical disabilities.

    I am 30 years old and was born with a mild case of Cerebral Palsy, a non-progressive disability that, for me, mostly affects movement. Living with a physical disability, I have dealt with the challenges of navigating our education system from that perspective.

    This is my second election running for Public School Trustee – one of the reasons why I'm running again is because I want to be an advocate for all students and their families - to ensure all of our students in the region are supported, included, and have the tools for success.

    I hope to earn your vote on October 22nd!

  • Image of Mike RAMSAY
    Mike RAMSAY
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    About Me:

    I have served as a Trustee since 1989, not because of what I could gain but for what I could give. Having served the Canadian public for over 35 years as a soldier, police officer, public servant, trustee and community volunteer. I have gained a variety of valuable knowledge and experience that I believe, helps me to make sound decisions as a trustee.

    My story is not uncommon I immigrated to Canada in my early teens and soon found myself living on my own while trying to get an education and make something of myself. The dedicated staff of Kitchener Collegiate Institute invested in me and this helped form the foundation for my successes in life. They put my interests ahead of their own and taught me that it was my responsibility to pay it forward.

    That is why; I serve you as a trustee.

    I aim to strike a balance to make the needs of everyone, student and public interest, my priority in governing all of my decisions as a trustee. The decisions made by trustees today can affect an entire generation; they need to be the right decisions for the right reasons.

  • Image of Kathi SMITH
    Kathi SMITH
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    About Me:

    Kathi Smith is running for her final term as trustee. Her hope is to see some significant support in our community and from our school board for less recognized groups. We have much to do to increase our EQAO results and support kids who are struggling. We need to support our teachers as we lose more and more of our more experienced staff as they retire. We need to talk with the current party to help them to make decisions that support our kids. We need to talk with not just adults but also kids to help move learning forward. We need to support the arts as well as sports for kids. We need to work together to support our students and help them meet with success. Students are our future!!! More

  • Image of Laurie TREMBLE
    Laurie TREMBLE
    About Me:

    Having been a committed volunteer with my sons’ schools, school councils, and numerous Board committees over the past 10 years, I have knowledge of the system. My experience as a graduate of this board and as the mother of two sons currently in high school gives me first-hand knowledge of the concerns and issues facing families in education today. More

  • Image of Brandon VAN DAM
    Brandon VAN DAM
    About Me:

    I am passionate about education and believe that the City of Kitchener deserves a fresh perspective when it comes to their Trustee at the Waterloo Region District School Board table. I am running to ensure that all of our students have an equal opportunity to be successful in school and will work hard to ensure our schools are safe and inclusive. I am a graduate of the Business Administration program from the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University. After moving to the Region for post-secondary education, I could not leave this wonderful community.

    I have worked in a variety of roles within the financial services industry and currently serve as the Associate Director for the Schlegel Centre for Entrepreneurship & Social Innovation at Wilfrid Laurier University, helping students and alumni create their own startups. I have continually given back to the community in which I live, currently serving on the Grand River Hospital Volunteer Association board of directors as the Vice President. It is through these experiences that I have gained skills in fiscal responsibility and budget management, governance, advocacy, but most importantly a focus on people.

    On October 22nd, vote for a candidate that will represent you and your community, vote for Brandon Van Dam!

  • Image of Natalie WADDELL
    Natalie WADDELL
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    About Me:

    I have served as a WRDSB trustee for Kitchener for the past 4 years. As a mother of a young child (who is a special education student), and as a long-term business owner, I believe I bring a wealth of hands-on knowledge and experiences that can further benefit the children, parents, and other the stakeholders in the Waterloo Region. I am seeking re-election because I feel my “job” is not yet done. I wish to have the opportunity to continue to advocate for things that constituents bring to me and for things that I believe are important for the students, parents / caregivers, educators, staff, community partners, and community members. Please visit my website to gather further information about myself, my priorities and commitments, as well as some examples of work I have accomplished these past four years your trustee. More

  • Image of Joanne WESTON
    Joanne WESTON
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    About Me:

    As a parent, I want the same things for my kids as you do – for them to learn, to feel included, to be safe, and to be happy at school. I am connected with the concerns of families in my community, and I share those concerns – about academic success, violence in the classroom, youth mental health, and communication between home and school. As a 15-year WRDSB volunteer, I implemented and advocated for programs that helped students feel included, safe, happy and ready to learn. I work in education and understand the Board’s role for these programs. It would be my privilege to represent your voice at the table and to be a partner in your child’s education. More

Township of Wellesley, Township of Woolwich

Number of Available Seats: 1

City of Waterloo, Township of Wilmot

Number of Available Seats: 3
  • Placeholder image of Samir ALAZZAM
    Samir ALAZZAM
  • Placeholder image of Zhengwei BAI
    Zhengwei BAI
  • Image of Matthew DONOVAN
    Matthew DONOVAN
    About Me:

    Education is important to me. I want to see that all students are given the best opportunities for success. I want to bring my experiences and ideas to the table and work on solving some of the issues that currently exist within the Waterloo Region District School Board. Please visit my website, for more information about me, why I am running, and what key issues are important to me. More

  • Image of John HENDRY
    John HENDRY
    About Me:

    I am a veteran Trustee. My experience includes Past Chair of the Board. I have had 2 Cabinet Appointments. 1) Minister's Advisory Council on Special Education (5 years) and 2) Accessibility Standards Council of Ontario (6 years). Received recognition for my commitment to students with special needs. My highlight as a Trustee was receiving the highest award for a public schoolTrustee in the Province of Ontario - Dr. Harry Paiken Award of Merit for outstanding commitment to public education and the community. I am an author and a Professional International Speaker. More

  • Placeholder image of Martha KOZUB
    Martha KOZUB
  • Image of Carol MILLAR
    Carol MILLAR
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    About Me:

    I am a retired Public Health Nurse who has had the pleasure of working in both elementary, secondary, and alternative schools as a school nurse for over 30 years. In my role, I provided curriculum support, classroom education, school wide health campaigns, parent education as well as facilitating smaller support groups within the school setting. I have a wealth of community experience combined with a lengthy, ongoing partnership with the board. Myself, my husband and my children are all proud graduates of our school board.

    In November, I will be concluding my first term as a Trustee with the WRDSB. It has been a unique experience that had a steep learning curve. During my time with the board, I have been involved in multiple board committees, made many visits to our elementary and secondary schools, celebrated with families and students at commencements, attended community events and worked closely with our Student Trustees and Student Senate. I have had the pleasure of meeting with parents, listening to their concerns, sharing those concerns at the board table and assisting them with navigating our school board system. I am also proud to have been involved in the development of our board ’s Strategic Plan

    I think the most important thing that you need to know about me is that I am passionate about education, educators, youth and my community and I am someone who is always open to new insights, learning and ideas. I promise to be prepared for what this job entails and to listen without judgement or bias. I have always been passionate about public education and a champion of the community, the diversity, the people and the services that Waterloo Region offers.

  • Placeholder image of Richard PFEIFLE
    Richard PFEIFLE
  • Image of Scott PIATKOWSKI
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    About Me:

    I decided to run for Trustee because I'm extremely concerned about the direction being taken by the new Provincial Government on education issues. We need strong local trustees to respond effectively to that agenda and to push back where necessary, limiting the damage wherever possible. I have a long history as a community advocate and considerable experience in leadership and governance roles both locally and nationally. I am hoping to bring that experience to the board table. More

  • Image of Kathleen WOODCOCK
    Kathleen WOODCOCK
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    About Me:

    I am in my fourth term as trustee for Waterloo/Wilmot. I have actively participated as a member of a variety of standing, statutory and ad hoc committees of the WRDSB. I have served as chair and vice-chair. As an advocate for public education, I believe in putting students first, transparent stakeholder engagement, and strong board governance. I am an avid gardener, an 'enthusiastic' golfer and the proud mother of two grown-up daughters and grandmother of two growing-up grandsons. More