Municipal election check-in: Mulmur
Mulmur residents can expect an interesting election with a race for all seats at the table. We offer a glimpse of those who have not served on Mulmur’s council before so our readers can become more familiar with the people and faces hoping to serve as elected officials. We will provide more comprehensive coverage, delving into platforms and election issues with all candidate in the near future.
Shirley Boxem is the Executive Director of Headwaters Communities in Action (HCIA), a not-for-profit that initializes and supports a variety of projects that enhance well-being. HCIA supports the Headwaters Food and Farming Alliance, CHATT (Citizens of Headwaters for Active Transportation Team), and is a key partner in the DC Moves initiative – a collective of Dufferin Social Service agencies working together to share information and address common issues. Most recently HCIA helped to get the Dufferin Community Foundation off the ground. The DCF is now wholly independent and she continues to serve as the Secretary. Shirley spent a number of years volunteering on the executive of NDACT/Food&WaterFirst and has advocated extensively for farmland protection and the importance of buying local food and supporting a resilient and sustainable food system. “I’ve learned many important things in my two most recent roles. We’ve all seen that community coming together can achieve tremendous things, and people feeling connected to their community is essential to personal and community health. I’ve learned to do my homework and stick to the facts. I look forward to the opportunity to bring all that I’ve learned and my passion for this community into being a capable councillor in Mulmur.”
Ken Cufaro was born and raised in Toronto. He has been a public servant since 1975 when he started his career as a police constable with Metropolitan Toronto Police and later with the OPP (Barrie Detachment).
In 1987, Ken with his wife Louise and children Elliott and Amanda moved and transitioned from city life to country living, when they took up residence and farming in Clearview Township. The transition was as smooth as silk as he found the country folk to be most welcoming, friendly and helpful in this new role as “farmer”.
After retiring from police work, Cufaro continued as a public servant and re-trained as a Certified Building Code Official and Licensed Paralegal.
He was Chief Building Official with the Township of Adjala-Tosorontio and later Essa Township. Cufaro finished off his career as Investigator, with Tarion Warranty (formerly Ontario New Home Warranty).
For the past 18 years, Ken and Louise have been residents of Mulmur Township.
At age 66, Cufaro, has decided to come out of retirement to seek the public servant role as councillor to give back to the community. He wants to help the agricultural, residential and business communities to thrive within the municipality of Mulmur, while sustaining a balanced protection of resources and growth.
Patty Clark has been a resident of Dufferin County for 30 years, the last 19 years in Mulmur, with her husband and two sons. She holds a degree from the University of Toronto, and a business certificate from Seneca College. Clark has 34 years of experience as an executive director in both provincial and national level not-for-profit sector. She received a Provincial Citation for her distinguished contribution to her field of work.
She is an author of many articles published in trade magazines, a speaker at national conferences and workshops, and is a media spokesperson for the health and fitness sector. She has spoken before several Parliamentary Standing Committees on topics relating to healthy aging. She has also been a member of four Program Advisory Committees at Colleges across Canada, and has chaired two of the four committees.
She has volunteered her time in Dufferin County, as a Board Member and then Chairperson for the Orangeville Minor Softball Association. She was also the event organizer for “An Evening of Entertainment”, which was presented for two consecutive years in Shelburne, as a fundraiser for the Dufferin Arts Council.
Clark’s vision is to keep majestic Mulmur as a sustainable rural/residential community. Her concerns focus on preventing the continual expansion of gravel pits and the irreparable damage they cause to the environment. She would also like to see a stronger adherence to zoning bylaw changes that are too easily changed in order to facilitate commercial development in residential areas.
Jim deMelo, 49, has lived in Mulmur for 12 years. He is married with two children.
He trained as a carpenter and attended George Brown College. He has a Masters Certificate in Project Management from York University Schulich School of Business and a Property Management Certificate – Institute of Housing Management (Humber College).
Since 2014, he has worked for a general contractor as a project manager, focusing on retrofit and renovations for the public and private sector.
DeMelo is the former director of facilities operation for a large public sector housing provider and implemented the facility management structure that is still in operation.
DeMelo was a member and Chairperson of the Mulmur Recreation Committee in 2015.