Richard Gould is the new mayor of Calvin Township, replacing Ian Pennell, 292 votes to 63.
"We had an interesting election here in Calvin," Gould tells BayToday.
There was also a race for council with 10 candidates running for four seats. Debbie Adams, Dean Grant, Robert Latimer, and Bill Moreton won spots at the table.
Voters clearly wanted change as no current councillors were re-elected.
Gould is ready to roll up his sleeves and get to work.
"I am still mayor-elect and can do nothing until after the swearing-in. I have already told the temporary clerk that I do not wish to be addressed as 'Your Worship,' and wish to get started with the business as soon as possible."
Calvin is a unique township with incredible natural resources and a very diverse population. There are three provincial parks, the Ecology Centre, the Eau Claire Gorge Conservation Area, and three very different and beautiful waterfalls.
"Many families have lived here for generations and have worked the land and opened the area, and many new residents have moved here to enjoy the self-sufficiency, the freedom and the beauty," Gould explains.
In the recent municipal election, average Ontario voter turnout was 34 per cent, but in Calvin it was over 54.
"The ratepayers have expressed a desire for change and it is the newly elected council’s responsibility to make that happen," he continued.
"The citizens want anger and division within the township to end. They believe there should be fewer closed meetings and better transmission of information. They want bylaws and programs that are designed primarily with the needs of all the people of Calvin in mind, and a Calvin Township that is run by Calvin and not outside companies and individuals.
"They want unity and mutual respect. And, of course, they want fiscal responsibility and a government that is strong enough to stand up to the provincial and federal governments and defend the rights of the people of Calvin."
Gould feels there is much to learn.
"We want to get things right and will not proceed carelessly, but I am confident that everyone will do their part in making Calvin a township of which we all can be proud. I guess we have our work cut out for us in the coming months."