“I hope you are all doing well and are keeping safe during this challenging time. Since requesting administration to bring forward more information for the Westerner Park recommendations on April 22, we have heard many questions and concerns surrounding Council’s rationale to table the matter for up to four weeks. The decision to table the issue was to request additional information to, given the magnitude of the financial request, ensure Council is making an informed decision that considers and benefits our community as a whole.
Council believes in Westerner Park and we are committed to protecting the 130 years of history Westerner Park has brought to our community. Given the significance of the recommendations before us, Council’s purpose is financial due diligence on behalf of our citizens prior to making a generational decision. We recognize the decision will have broad community impact through our capital investments; resulting in the need to delay or cancel projects in The City’s capital plan, which we have a responsibility to fully consider.
Council is acutely aware of the economic, social and cultural importance of Westerner Park to our city and region, and the recommendations will come back to Council within the next few weeks. Our priority is to ensure we consider all information possible, while taking the necessary time for a generational decision of this financial magnitude. It is clear in principal that our Council will provide financial support to protect the future of Westerner Park, however, what is left to be decided is how this will be structured to protect the financial future of our community as a whole.
(Friday, I met) with members of the Westerner Park Board, Westerner Foundation Committee and Westerner Park Past Presidents to share information, as well as address questions and concerns about the decision making process. As legacy builders and community builders, they have invested time, energy and financial commitments in Westerner Park, so it is imperative that they be involved in and aware of the next steps in what has been a multi-phased process, as we know this issue is a personal one for many in our community. We are committed to helping Westerner Park, because it is the right thing to do, but how that is structured will be the decision on the table in the coming weeks.”
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Shelly Flint Appointed as New CEO of Westerner Park
Westerner Park, a distinguished agricultural society and premier exhibition venue in the heart of Central Alberta, is pleased to announce Shelly Flint as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). This decision culminates a thorough and extensive search process, with the Board of Directors expressing their enthusiasm for the promising journey ahead under Shelly’s leadership.
Tyler Nightingale, President of the Board of Directors, shared his excitement about the appointment, stating, “After a comprehensive search, we are thrilled to welcome Shelly. Her extensive experience, skill set, and knowledge align seamlessly with the strategic direction of Westerner Park, ensuring a positive and enduring impact on both the organization and the community at large.”
Tara Lodewyk, Red Deer City Manager, added, “Shelly immediately connected with the mission of Westerner Park and the value it brings to the culture of our city and region. We are looking forward to working together and are confident in her leadership of Westerner Park.”
For the past two decades, Shelly has served as a senior executive, spearheading diverse teams within Alberta’s dynamic entertainment and finance sectors. Her tenure as the former CFO at the Calgary Stampede equips her with a distinctive insight into the intricacies of Westerner Park, enabling her to adeptly navigate its challenges and leverage its opportunities. Coupled with her roots in Central Alberta, Shelly is poised to steer the Park towards growth and long-term sustainability.
Shelly expressed her eagerness to join Westerner Park, saying, “I was thrilled at the opportunity to return to Central Alberta, where I grew up! Leading this purpose-driven organization will allow me to contribute to my community and affect meaningful change.”
Shelly Flint’s robust leadership, commitment to community, and extensive experience makes her an exceptional choice to lead Westerner Park into the future. The entire Westerner Park team eagerly anticipates the positive impact she will bring to this renowned institution.
About Westerner Park
Westerner Park is Central Alberta’s largest tradeshow, agricultural, sports, entertainment, and convention facility. A not-for-profit organization and agricultural society, Westerner Park typically generates $150 million annually in economic activity, hosting over 1,500 events and 1.5 million visitors each year.
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