Letter: Retiring Langley school trustee passes paddle along

Dear Editor,

I have decided not to seek re-election in November. I made this very difficult decision in May after lengthy discussions with my family.

It is at times difficult being a public figure, not only for me but for my family as well. I have decided that a four-year commitment is just too long for me to make at this time.

I would like to thank Langley Township residents who on two occasions elected me to serve as a school trustee. I am honoured to have been elected and proud to have been the first Aboriginal person elected to the Langley Board of Education.

I thank my fellow trustees for working together through challenging times when difficult and at times unpopular decisions had to be made. I value our relationships and the way we have been able to come together over the past 3½ years.

We have accomplished a great deal and we will continue to guide this district in a positive direction.

Thanks to all the staff of School District No. 35. I have to say their work in our district is truly powerful. Through their dedication and expertise they continue to make a difference for our students every day.

I have loved being a trustee, and as I reflect over the past few years, I will always cherish the many Christmas concerts, graduations, openings of new schools and playgrounds, special assemblies such as the Olympic opening and closing ceremonies, theatre productions, and attending many Aboriginal events in so many of our schools.

Having the opportunity to be in schools with our students is what I truly loved and will miss.

I also want to thank Township Mayor Jack Froese and City Acting Mayor Ted Schaffer, along with the many councillors whom I have had the pleasure of getting to know and work with. By working together we do make a difference!

I remember being sworn in for the first time, and Chief Marilyn Gabriel from Kwantlen First Nation saying to the board that we now must all paddle in the same canoe and work together.

With this decision I will leave others to paddle and guide this district in the direction it needs to go.

Cecelia Reekie, Langley school trustee

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