Prince Rupert’s new mayor steps back into comfortable pair of jeans

A new Prince Rupert mayor and city council were sworn into office on Nov. 7. Mayor Herb Pond is surrounded by returning councillors Barry Cunningham, Reid Skelton-Morven, Wade Niesh and Gurvinder Randhawa. Missing is Nick Adey and newcomer to council Teri Forster. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)A new Prince Rupert mayor and city council were sworn into office on Nov. 7. Mayor Herb Pond is surrounded by returning councillors Barry Cunningham, Reid Skelton-Morven, Wade Niesh and Gurvinder Randhawa. Missing is Nick Adey and newcomer to council Teri Forster. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Prince Rupert City Councillor Barry Cunningham is sworn into municipal office on Nov. 7 for his third term. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)Prince Rupert City Councillor Barry Cunningham is sworn into municipal office on Nov. 7 for his third term. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond said being back in the council chambers after a 14-year absence is like stepping into a comfortable pair of jeans. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond said being back in the council chambers after a 14-year absence is like stepping into a comfortable pair of jeans. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
City Councillor Gurvinder Randhawa sign his oath of office after being sworn in as a returning city leader on Nov.7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)City Councillor Gurvinder Randhawa sign his oath of office after being sworn in as a returning city leader on Nov.7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Returning for another term as city councillor, Reid Skelton-Morven accepts his position and swore his oath of office on Nov. 7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)Returning for another term as city councillor, Reid Skelton-Morven accepts his position and swore his oath of office on Nov. 7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
City Councillor Wade Niesh signs his oath of office as a city leader at an inauguration ceremony on Nov. 7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)City Councillor Wade Niesh signs his oath of office as a city leader at an inauguration ceremony on Nov. 7. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Returning to office Port Edward Mayor Knut Bjorndal and newly elected Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond offer best wishes to departing city Mayor Lee Brain as he chose to step away from municipal politics to focus on his family. Prince Rupert city council members were sworn into office on Nov. 7 after recent elections. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)Returning to office Port Edward Mayor Knut Bjorndal and newly elected Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond offer best wishes to departing city Mayor Lee Brain as he chose to step away from municipal politics to focus on his family. Prince Rupert city council members were sworn into office on Nov. 7 after recent elections. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

New city leaders pledged their oath of office at an inauguration ceremony during the Prince Rupert City Council meeting on Nov. 7.

A crowded city council chamber held more than 25 audience members to witness the swearing-in of Mayor Herb Pond, City Councillors Barry Cunningham, Wade Niesh, Gurvinder Randhawa and Reid Skelton Morven. Returning Councillor Nick Adey and newcomer to council Teri Forster participated by taking their oaths of office online. The ceremonial circumstance was presided over by retired Judge Herman Seidemann, with a traditional welcome from Hereditary Chief Sm’ooygit Gitxoon, Alex Campbell, followed by a welcome reception.

Pond described his return to the helm of the city council after a 14-year absence from chambers as similar to putting on cozy clothing.

“It’s like putting on a comfortable pair of jeans,” Pond told The Northern View. “You know I’ve been here before. Lots has changed and lots hasn’t.”

Pond said it won’t be shocking news that he intends to carry on with his election promises and goals of prioritizing moving the community forward using plans developed by the previous council.

“We need to work on housing. We need to work on our water system in particular. All of that needs to happen in a way that builds up the 2030 plan. The biggest job in all of that is getting the money so we can actually do those things.”

Pond previously held the office of city mayor from 2002 to 2008 for back-to-back three-year terms.

Outgoing Mayor Lee Brain said Prince Rupert is a neighbourhood of people that supports its mayors and he couldn’t have completed his eight-year term without a cornerstone of backing from residents and stakeholders.

“[The community] has been behind me for the last eight years supporting the journey. It’s made it a lot easier a road. So, I really thank all the residents of the town.”

Brain said he is confident in Pond’s successorship and the vision the new council holds.

“We’ve created the vision, and everyone’s working towards that,” he said.

While it is pleasing to see council members continuing on and he is proud of what he accomplished as mayor of the city, leaving office comes with some relief, he said.

“It feels like a weight lifted off my shoulders … So for me, it’s time to be a dad. It’s time to enjoy my family and live life again.”


K-J Millar | Editor and Multimedia Journalist
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