John Michael Cole
Regional District of Central Okanagan
Party or Slate (if applicable)
Do you know how much your local government invests in the arts? Would you commit to advocating for an increase in that cultural investment for arts, culture, and heritage in your community, within the capacity of your elected body?
I do not know how much but finding out will be one of my first priorities. The next would be, in with the collaboration with the arts, culture and heritage communities (A/C/H) to see how effective the current program has been.
If elected, will you take an active role on behalf of your local government in championing the growth of arts, culture and heritage in your community? Why?
Yes, I would do so as A/C/H is a vital expression of a communities pride and character.
Students with an education rich in the arts have better grade point averages and are three times more likely to get a degree. Will you commit to making the arts a critical component of every child’s education? If so, how?
I will work to support making the arts a critical component of every child's education.
How will your local government maintain or grow its investment in cultural programs in your community?
This would be done in consultation with the A/C/H community.
Will you work to ensure access to affordable, sustainable cultural spaces for artists and arts organizations? If so, how?
Yes, by determining what we currently have is being used efficiently and by determining what shortfall exists, then advocating for improvements.
How do you propose to improve cultural tourism in your community?
Creating exciting venues and promoting cultural programs that tell our story.
How do you propose to attract or retain artists and cultural workers in your community?
The unique environment we live in makes it easier to do this. However, artists and cultural workers who add value to the Okanagan visitor experience should be recognized for that effort.
What do you feel is the single most important issue relating to arts, culture, and heritage in your community, and what action will you take to address it?
In the past, change came at a slower pace which allowed for assimilation of change and integration of that changed identity in the populus. Today that is not the case. So, I would have to say relevancy is the most important issue.
How do you personally engage in the cultural life of the community? (e.g. involvement on committees, attending arts and culture events, etc.)