Keremeos village office is looking for a new Chief Administrative Officer as current CAO Joni Heinrich prepares to move on to other challenges.
Heinrich has been a presence in the village office since July of 2007. She will have served four years in Keremeos when she moves on in mid August.
Prior to Keremeos, Heinrich was corporate officer for Sechelt, a community of 9,000 on the Sunshine Coast.
“ It was a good experience – it prepared me well for this job,” Heinrich said of her prior experience.
Some of the high points of Heinrich’s administration includes the improvements to Memorial Park, the Upper Bench sewer expansion, and the continuation of financially responsible budgeting.
“I’m very impressed with council and their focus on the budget. They see the need to put money away for a rainy day – for such a small village, Keremeos is quite sound, financially.”
Heinrich sees the campground initiative as a positive one that has helped to alleviate several negative issues in town.
“I feel proud of the role I have played in developing the campground,” she said.
One of the biggest challenges Heinrich has faced in Keremeos has been in “getting the message in”.
“People want to be heard, but how do we get their message?” she asked, noting that for all the ads, editorials, and other means by which the village tries to pass along information, “we still don’t seem to get much of a response.
This has been an issue with me.”
Heinrich leaves Keremeos for the central B.C. town of Chase, population of which is roughly double that of Keremeos.
“It’s time for me to tackle some different issues, different challenges,” she said. Council is currently looking at a handful of prospective candidates.
“I’ve learned a ton – I’ve enjoyed my time here very much. I’ve learned a lot about individual viewpoints with respect to municipal governments.
There is a quote I recently came across that I find myself understanding a little more completely each day – ‘Never underestimate the value of someone else’s opinion.’
It’s an idea that I find very applicable to the work I do.”