I am happy to share a bit of insight into how my team at City Hall works.
Rideau-Vanier is a bustling ward. Thankfully, my team members Michelle, Bailee, Sheila & Amanda– are just as active and caring as I am. They help connect and advance projects on behalf of residents, community organizations, and businesses for our community.
We are a small but hardworking team; each individual plays an important role. We are proud to represent the heart (communities) of Canada’s Capital. Depending on concerns, the team tackles it! Here are the areas the team members focus on:
Michelle grew up in a small town just outside Guelph, Ontario. Having moved to Toronto as an English and Film major, Michelle’s career aspirations shifted to journalism after working on documentaries. After graduating from j-school, she moved to Ottawa in 2010, where she honed her skills as a print journalist – many may remember Michelle as our local community news reporter. Michelle now leads the planning and legislative files in our office and is the “go-to” for all questions on development.
In addition, Michelle is passionate about heritage and protecting our urban tree canopy. She has enjoyed working on planning files and seeing how developments are shaped by the collaboration between city planners, community stakeholders, and developers. Since moving to Ottawa and initially calling Vanier home, Michelle enjoys walking along the river through Riverain and Kingsview parks and frequents the Beechwood Market on weekends.
Bailee was born and raised in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, and is a proud fransaskoise. She moved to Ottawa to continue her studies in French at the University of Ottawa, where she earned a bachelor’s in political science. As a team member, Bailee fosters the relationship between community members and our office; she works with staff and community partners on public art projects and parks and recreation programming.
Bailee has a passion for engaging with residents to work together on hands-on approaches for the betterment of the community. She enjoys spending time in Byward Market – one of her favourite stores is Paper-Papier. She loves to stroll through Major’s Hill Park and take in the views.
Sheila grew up in Bujumbura, the capital of Burundi and has lived in Ottawa since 2016. Instantly, she fell in love with the city that both gives the comfort of being part of a diverse society and the safety of a safe home. She obtained a bachelor’s degree in communications at University of Ottawa and started working in the office a few months after her graduation. She is leading our communication on all fronts, and is leading on a number of initiatives including transit, infrastructure renewal and many special projects on our team.
Growing up as a girl scout, Sheila fostered a passion to be of service and to always “be prepared” in case of need. She enjoys working for the community and ready to support with its most complex challenges and also leverage our City’s opportunity. Sheila travels to City Hall by bus daily and does see opportunities to continue to improve the service and the customer experience. Coming to Ottawa when cycling infrastructure is being built, she learned to ride a bike in a park near her home in 2021 hoping one day to make her dream of riding a bike comfortably to go to work come true. Besides, Byward Market is her favorite place to walk with City character including its vintage boutiques, “sweet spots” like the Beavertails or bookstores like Patrick McGahern books for its rare paper findings.
Amanda is originally from Ottawa, though her love of languages (French, Spanish and Italian) and joy of meeting people from around the world, led her to live and work in Europe for 15+ years.
More recently she helped to promote Ontario’s wine, craft beer and artisan cheese products to the consumer; and then moved into a sports and community role increasing sports visibility in the neighbourhood and creating new onsite events such as Outdoor Markets and Book Club.
Amanda is a people-person, likes to be involved in the community and to help others; she loves travel, books, foreign films, international cuisine and tennis. Amanda has lived in Sandy Hill, New Edinburgh, Manor Park and Overbrook so is very familiar with the area and many of the local issues that we all live through and takes pride in helping locals.
Amanda plays an important role to support residents and businesses in our area, responding to emerging challenges they are facing, coordinating and supporting our team in delivering timely and effective responses. Amanda is also leading a number of special projects and community initiatives.community initiatives