Valerie Powell is a triple Green candidate, committed to green values and policies with a background in both the arts and health and an active member of the Orillia and Simcoe North community. Born in England, Valerie grew up in Toronto and Orillia before attending the Ontario College of Art. She later moved back to Simcoe County with husband Jamie to an old Medonte schoolhouse. While raising livestock and two children, Gray and Elizabeth, Valerie taught weaving, opened the Children’s General Store in Orillia and was Executive Director of the regional Lung Association.
Listeners to CBC Radio “Ontario Morning” will recognize her voice from many years as their Huronia correspondent. In 1990, the Powells moved to Guelph where Valerie completed an Honours BA in Fine Arts and a MSc in Gerontology Research. After returning to Simcoe County, Valerie spent 10 years as a psychogeriatric consultant before becoming coordinator of the new Behavioural Support System in North Simcoe Muskoka, supporting older adults with challenging behaviours due to cognitive impairment. She has worked with the Dementia and Elder Abuse Networks to improve the health care system. An energetic and passionate leader, Valerie is a dedicated volunteer and community builder and an ardent supporter of the arts. She was a practicing artist and arts reviewer for CBC radio, has served on the Board of a Transitional House for Women and volunteers for the Mariposa Folk Festival. She was a member of the Severn Sound Sustainability Advisory Team and the Simcoe County Zero Waste Coalition. Valerie is an energetic community activist, gardener, decorator and sports enthusiast. Recently retired, she supports a husband recovering from a stroke and a 91 year old mother. Valerie currently chairs the Seniors Working Group of the Orillia Community Action Network, sits on the Behavioural Support Advisory Committee of the NSM LHIN and has recently joined the board of the Alzheimer Society of Simcoe County. She advocates for the aging population and believes strongly that healthy lives are grounded in a clean environment and a green economy.
Valerie has run twice in Simcoe North for the Green Party of Canada, earning 11% of the vote in 2008, and stepped in to maintain the green profile in the 2015 Ontario bi-election. Valerie agrees with GPO leader Mike Schreiner; a Green voice at Queen’s Park will help ensure honesty, integrity, and good public policy in Ontario.