I’ve lived in West Vancouver for more than 30 years, and my love for this community has inspired my life in public service. I have been driven by a desire to make West Vancouver as livable, vibrant and inclusive as possible. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished together towards that goal, and look forward to continuing to serve this community to reach even greater heights.
A lifelong resident of the Lower Mainland, I was raised by my single mother, who worked full-time to
support my younger brother and me after my father was diagnosed with a mental illness early in their marriage. Watching my young mother struggle financially and my father face the unfairness of his disease led me to a career in law. A proud graduate of the region’s public schools, I completed my commerce and law degrees at the University of British Columbia. After teaching commercial law at U.B.C.’s Sauder School of Business, I practiced for over ten years, including positions as a provincial
crown prosecutor and in-house corporate counsel.
I met my husband, John Sampson, at U.B.C., and our first date back in 1989 was on his turf - a stroll on
the Centennial Seawalk. It was a beautiful September afternoon, and I fell in love with him and West
Vancouver that day. We raised two daughters here, Madeleine and Charlotte, who both attended Ecole Pauline Johnson and graduated from Sentinel Secondary in the French Immersion program.Madeleine now lives and works in Los Angeles, and Charlotte is pursuing a law degree at the University of Victoria.
Coming from modest and at times challenging circumstances instilled in me the values of kindness,
compassion, and fairness. I've raised our children to appreciate the gifts we have been given, and I
firmly believe that when you respect and encourage others, they will perform at their best.
My community service began as a parent at Pauline Johnson, where I was Chair of the Parent AdvisoryCouncil. Always a strong advocate for children and youth, I first entered public life as an elected school trustee in 2005, committed to the goal of helping to build Canada's finest public school system. Six years on the Board of Education, including three as Chair, taught me that strong leadership and good governance will lead to improved performance, and I'm confident today that parents, staff, and students have never been so proud of our schools.
Public education in British Columbia between 2005 and 2011 was characterized by significant financial restraint, unprecedented labour relations challenges, and a dramatic decline in student enrolment. The School District - West Vancouver’s second largest employer - withstood these challenges, attracting over 1000 new students which helped to build a budget surplus, all the while ensuring that student achievement levels were, by every measure, at the top of the province.
While we have much to be proud of in West Vancouver, I was convinced that this same formula of
strong leadership and good governance could make our community an even better place to live, and so in 2011 I ran for municipal council. After eleven years, I am confident that we are on the right track,despite the growing concerns related to housing diversity and traffic congestion. We now have a strong and capable senior management team, with whom I have an effective working relationship. My goal is to see council working better together and with this team to meet the challenges facing our community. I am very optimistic that the changes proposed in the Official Community Plan, Economic Development Plan, and Arts and Culture Strategy will help ensure that ours is a community where:
New and more diverse forms of housing provide greater opportunities for citizens of all ages;
The charm and economic vitality of the villages of Ambleside, Dundarave and Horseshoe Bay are restored;
Innovative solutions make travel across the North Shore and downtown less frustrating;
All residents, particularly those new to the community, have the opportunity to connect with others, to contribute, and to feel a sense of belonging;
An active, healthy lifestyle and athletic pursuits are supported and encouraged;
Arts, culture, and heritage thrive; and
The natural beauty of our parks, mountains, oceans and streams is protected.
I consider it a great privilege to serve this community as an elected official, and find much joy in working closely with the many citizens who share my love of West Vancouver. I look forward to working with you to help build Canada's finest community.