Meet Maggie Burton! She is running for Councillor At Large.
Navigating the City as an artist, teacher, entrepreneur and mom of young children, I found community, but also many challenges. I moved to St. John’s from Brigus in 2009 to attend music school, quickly falling in love with the City’s arts scene and vibrant community. I had my first two children, Jack and Ursula, but to support our growing family, I needed multiple jobs. I taught violin, played with the Symphony and various bands, managed arts and education nonprofits. I worked as a leadership coach for senior executives. I recorded albums, published poetry, volunteered. I saw how municipal politics impacted my day-to-day life but didn’t see a Council that reflected my experience. Thanks to supporters and volunteers, in 2017 I was elected as a Councillor at Large. Since then I have been busy, working on hot-button issues like Council’s climate change strategy; on major operational reforms like the new development regulations; and on my constituents’ everyday municipal problems. At the moment my portfolios are Planning and Development; Heritage; Youth; Audit; and Animal Care. I also serve on the Metrobus board, the St. John’s Urban Indigenous Coalition, on the board for The Children’s Centre, and as co-chair of the St. John’s Food Policy Council. In my spare time, I enjoy gardening and hiking. I am an avid writer and painter, and I love spending time with my children, my cat Bess, and many houseplants. My third child Edith was born in April.
We asked Maggie why she decided to run again for council:
I’m proud of my contributions these last four years, but there is still much more to be done. I believe in a St. John’s where residents feel connected to each other and to the place they call home regardless of age, ability, income, race, or gender. We face a lot of challenges as a city: a sprawling urban fabric, a harsh climate, an aging population, an uncertain provincial economy.
Now more than ever, municipal politics has both immediate and long-term impacts on our day-to-day lives as we grapple with overlapping economic, climate, and social crises. I believe we can work together to build a healthy, sustainable, and just city that works for the residents of St. John’s. Despite Snowmageddon and Covid-19, the financial burden of taxes has fallen, and service levels have risen. We’ve passed electoral reform, increased harm-reduction measures, and improved livability with traffic-calming, the Pedestrian Mall and more snow clearing. Yet there’s much left to be done.
Over the next four years, I will continue promoting inclusion and reconciliation so every resident feels a sense of belonging in this place we all call home. I will help St. John’s realize its potential as one of Canada’s most attractive destinations by preserving and ensuring access to our City’s exceptional attractions, built heritage, and diverse cultural sector. I will continue supporting sustainable growth through efficient core services; a progressive development approval process; and a modern, accessible transportation network.