First elected in 2014, Christina Bisanz was acclaimed to serve as Councillor for Ward 7 in Newmarket for a second four year term, in 2018. Representing her home Ward 7 comes with conviction for Christina. “Newmarket, and Ward 7, specifically, are quickly growing and changing. We need leaders on Council who will seek community-centred solutions for the challenges that come with that growth and change, along with a bold, strategic vision for the future of Newmarket,” said Christina.
In addition to her role on Councillor, Christina serves as the CEO of CHATS-Community & Home Assistance to Seniors, providing homecare and community services to enable over 8,300 older persons and their caregivers in York Region and South Simcoe, to continue living independently, safely and with dignity in their own homes as long as possible. CHATS is a significant employer in the regions, with over 320 staff, and a remarkable roster of close to 500 volunteers. It is a position that lends itself to providing Christina with additional insight into the needs of the seniors’ community in Newmarket.
Christina’s involvement in the community spans many years prior to becoming a member of Council. In fact, it was her efforts and advocacy as a founding member and chair of the Glenway Preservation Association, that lead to her decision to run for municipal office. “I have always been engaged. I believe that you get what you give, and giving to my community has been a priority for me,” Christina said. As a resident of Ward 7 for close to 30 years, Christina’s record of local community involvement over that time has included being a member of the Parent Council for St. Nicholas elementary school, founding chair of the Newmarket Public Library’s Pathfinders to Employment community collaborative, member of the Newmarket Chamber of Commerce’s Prosperity Steering Committee, member of the Southlake Regional Health Centre’s Health Sciences Commission, founding director of the Newmarket-Aurora chapter of CARP, and a director with the Human Services Planning Board of York Region.
Christina’s involvement outside of the local community is equally impressive. She served as a public representative of Advertising Standards Canada, was a director of the Consumers Council of Canada, and governor of Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame, to name but a few. Christina career experience has included senior executive positions in major industry sectors ranging from manufacturing and retailing of consumer products, health care, technology and police services boards, where she was responsible for representing sector interests to all levels of government in Canada, and internationally.
As Ward 7 Councillor, Christina has focused on the issues that concern residents most—especially issues related with growth: “Change is never easy, and it brings challenges that are not always favourable to the community. While we’ve welcomed new people to our neighbourhoods, we’ve also seen more congestion in traffic, housing, and loss of precious green space,” Christina said, specifically referring to the current development of the former Glenway golf course. Christina believes what is needed is community-centred solutions, and that requires Ward 7′s council member to be able to understand, appreciate and reflect the full diversity of the interests of Ward 7 as a whole. To that end, Christina established a Ward 7 Community Advisory Group. “The group brings me together with community thoughtleaders who serve as my sounding board and touchstone on issues affecting our local neighbourhoods, ” said Christina.
Christina’s approach is not just to be the voice on council for Ward 7 residents but also to contribute to the important decision-making processes of the town of Newmarket as a whole. “If Newmarket is to position itself for investment and job growth we need leverage the advantage and potential of our assets such as Southlake Regional Health Centre along with our other knowledge-based businesses, as a centre for innovation, research and development,” Christina said.
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