Photo by John Johnston
The Province, through Alberta Municipal Affairs, is responsible for all functions of local government in the improvement districts, including the levy and collection of taxes. The residents of an improvement district (I.D.) elect representatives, who are subsequently appointed by the Minister, to an advisory council which assists in the administration of each district. The provincial and federal governments have primary governing responsibility in these areas except for school affairs.
The council, consisting of five members each, guides the activities of the improvement district manager and staff. The formal power rests with the Minister of Municipal Affairs, but most power and responsibility has been delegated to the councils.
The Advisory Council
I have had the privilege to serve on the ID#4 Council for over 20 years and have participated in ID initiated or supported projects that have served to enhance our community including: Playground and Water Spray Park (now VRC site), Acquisition of Crooked Creek Campground, Crooked Creek Campground operations oversight, Staff House (triplex) building, Playground and Water Spray Park relocation and construction on WCC site, Construction of new Waterton Golf Course maintenance building. (No ID component except through the WCJV), Crooked Creek Campground renovation (on going). Supporting the above projects were many community volunteers, ID Councillors and WPCA Directors, all of whom contributed to their successful completion. I have enjoyed working with them all.
Education and Working Career
- Geologist and retired P.Geol. (Alberta); MBA (UWO)
- My geological career included mineral exploration and exploration and production of oil and gas.
- My business career includes ownership / management of a group of companies in the business areas of Manufacturing – generally metal based products, serving several markets but primarily mining and transportation, Real Estate – commercial / industrial properties (principally Calgary) and Explosives (divested in 2010).
- I am now retired from all ‘day-to-day’ operating responsibilities but remain active on a Directors / Shareholders level.
Like many Waterton residents (cottagers and commercial operators) my family connection to Waterton is multi-generational. With her two sons, my grandmother started escaping the hot Medicine Hat summers in favour of the cool mountain air in the late 1910’s. My dad built a cottage which was sold around the time of WW2 and he bought back into Waterton in the mid 1950’s. From that time, our connection to Waterton has been continuous. Bonny and I purchased our cottage in the mid 1990’s and rebuilt in 1999. With the arrival of my granddaughter last month, we’re now on our fifth generation though my sister (Barbara) beat me in that department by a few years.
Brian is fourth generation Watertonian who lives and works year round in Waterton. Brian is one the of the few who can claim attending the Waterton School, which he did until Grade 7. His start in the family business began in 1962 as “bilge pumper” on the Lady Cameron tour boat at Cameron Lake. Since then, the original family business has undergone much growth and development and Brian has a demanding role as lead in a variety of expanded business operations and property interests in Waterton and Pincher Creek area. Throughout Brian’s life he has been actively involved in various community organizations. He has great community passion and is known for always caring about and thinking about how to plan for Waterton’s future. Over the past 40 years, he has been in leadership roles in many of Waterton’s original community organizations. These have included the Waterton Lakes National Park Advisory Board, Waterton Recreation & Cultural Society, Waterton Natural History Association, and Waterton Lakes Television Association. He was a founding member and past President of the Waterton Park Community Association (WPCA). He was a founding member and Chairman of the Waterton Community Council (which later became the Improvement District #4 of which he is currently a councilor.) His work as President of the WPCA included working with Parks Canada in the development of the original “Framework for Development” planning document, which led to the design and implementation of a strategy for future growth and development in Waterton Lakes National Park. The Waterton Community Plan process is the result of that process. Brian Baker’s ongoing and continuing commitment and passion for Waterton’s future is evident. “I will continue to actively participate in ensuring that the Waterton community will become a self-sustaining, well managed, and cost effective National Park community. I am committed to enhancing the economic, cultural and environmental sustainability of Waterton Lakes National Park and furthering the international appreciation of this unique World Heritage Site.”
Barbara Niven Clay
Councillor, Deputy Chair
I have been a summer resident of Waterton for over 50 years. My parents, Bob and Mary Niven, spent many summers here with their children. From summer jobs at Kootenai Lodge (now the Bayshore) and the Prince of Wales Hotel, to many hours riding trails on horseback, Waterton is a place I have loved and visited since I was a small child. My children have many wonderful memories of holidays here, and now my grandchildren and their children are making memories.
I was born and raised in Lethbridge. After earning my B.A. (University of Calgary), Bachelor and Master degrees in Library and Information Studies (University of Alberta), I worked at the Lethbridge College Library, the Lethbridge Public Library, and the University of Lethbridge Library, where I served in administrative roles. I also was a partner in an information consulting firm, MW Associates, in the 1970s and 1980s.
As a volunteer, I have served on many boards and committees, including the Waterton Natural History Association, where I was Chair of the Board.
As a long time summer resident, I have an abiding interest in seeing Waterton continue as a vibrant community. I think it is very important to have local representation on the Council that includes all aspects of the community. If elected, I am willing to work hard to help the Council reach its goals and to represent you the voter and taxpayer.
Keith B. Robinson is a 3rd generation Waterton business owner/operator who can trace his family’s Waterton-presence back to the 1950’s. Keith grew up spending his summers in WLNP hiking, climbing, boating, biking, golfing, fishing, kayaking and stargazing (among other adventures). He began working in his family’s tour boat business at an early age, and as he grew older, he earned his Masters Limited License from Transport Canada.
Over the years he would become a professionally certified interpretive tour guide, climb all of the named mountain peaks and ridges in the Park, float/paddle many of the area’s waterways, and finish a Bachelor of Commerce (B.Comm) degree in Tourism Management / Marketing, with special focus on Destination Management. Just prior to the outbreak of the global pandemic, Keith was named one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, by Canadian Traveler Magazine.
Over the years Keith has served the Waterton community in various capacities, including being part of the old Waterton Park Volunteer Fire Brigade; guiding for the WPCA’s Wildflower Festival and Wildlife Weekend; serving a term on the Waterton Natural History Association; maintaining relations with nearby communities via the Alberta Southwest organization; and acting as Director/Secretary for the Waterton Park Chamber of Commerce, which he has served on, for well over a decade. In addition, Keith has consistently attended ID#4 regular council meetings for the past 5 years and served on the ID#4 ad hoc Clean Lake Initiative committee to assist in establishing the boat quarantine/seal program.
While involved with the daily operations of Waterton Inter-Nation Shoreline Cruise Co., Keith considers himself a true entrepreneur, having started a brand-new guiding business in 2018, Dark Sky Guides (totally separate and independent of the family tour boats). Not only has DSG weathered the pandemic, but it earned the Travel Alberta Tourism Award ALTO Winner for New Tourism Experience of the Year.
Keith is one of the few Waterton residents that live in town all year round. Alongside his wife, Mariajose Robinson, Keith has lived in Waterton year-round for the past seven years and they have now begun to raise their 1-year-old German Shepherd (Lando) as well as their 6-month-old son (Maverick) here.
Inspired to share his knowledge of, and appreciation for, his home, Keith offers up a true, authentic local’s perspective to park visitors, residents, seasonal cabin owners, and their friends and families. As a steward of WLNP, he strives to assist others in fostering their own personal connection with this amazing place. Visiting and residing in WLNP is about memorable experiences and personally connecting with the destination, its offerings, and its people. In order to ensure that the community continues to offer memorable experiences for all, it should have an ID#4 council comprised of locals that are intimately familiar with the area, and that can find a balance between preserving the natural environment and celebrating the cultural/human history of the community, while at the same time being able to look to the future, embrace change, evolve, and communicate/work cooperatively with other community organizations and Parks Canada – all things that Keith is capable of, and excited to do.
In 1982 my family defected from communist Czechoslovakia and immigrated to Canada. I received a B.A (History) from University of Alberta in 2002. My career has largely been spent in supply chain management. For the past 13 years I have been with a major Canadian oil and gas company.
My wife and I were lucky enough to purchase the Armstrong cabin three years ago. We enjoy Waterton for all the outdoor activities it has to offer. We have two small children aged 6 months and 4 years. As they grow older, we look forward to creating many wonderful memories here.
I see a bright future ahead for I.D 4 as I believe previous council’s have left a strong framework which we can build on to take the district into the future. I’m looking for your support on August 23 and am looking forward to working with the other elected councillors.
Chief Administrative Officer
Scott loves spending time with his seven grandchildren and wife, Dianne. He likes nature and enjoys exploring new places and cultures.
Scott retired from the Town of Raymond in 2019. He has 35 years of Municipal service 29 of which were in Raymond. He believes in excellence in municipal administration and helping to build capacity through strategic and collaborative initiatives.
Scott has a master’s degree in business administration and firmly believes in Life-long learning. He is a strong supporter of the Municipal Internship Program and thoroughly enjoyed helping future municipal leaders explore, develop, and flourish in the municipal environment.
After a year and a half of retirement Scott has re-entered the work force as the GM for the Waterton Community Joint Venture, CAO for Improvement District No. 4 Waterton Lakes National Park, and President of the Sugar City Development Corporation. His full profile can be viewed on Linkedin.