Debra Toporowski is running for re-election as a councillor in North Cowichan.
She said she was born and raised in the Cowichan Valley, with a First Nations and Chinese heritage.
“My mother is the late Ethel Jack and my father is Howard Wong, and I have three brothers and two sisters,” Toporowski said.
“I wish to work towards finding the right balance of economic, environmental and social issues that we all care about. There are many critical issues, including water, affordable housing, a healthy environment, food security and others issues which are important to you and your family. I am excited to continue to take on this challenge.”
Toporowski said she worked as a constituency assistant for 12 years for two MLAs, she is a fourth-term elected Cowichan Tribes councillor and a North Cowichan councillor.
“I am the first elected female to have held both positions on two councils at the same time,” she said.
“I am the chair of the First Nations relations committee and appointed to the CVRD board of directors and sit on the Cowichan Watershed Board. I became deputy/acting mayor [of North Cowichan] on March 1, 2022. I was appointed to the Pacific Salmon Commission, southern panel member, Canadian section in 2020-2025 and was appointed Indigenous Watershed Champion in May, 2021.”
Toporowski said she is a caring person who knows how to listen to people and their community issues, and then take action to pursue a better, fairer process for all.
“I am also passionate about fighting for the protection of our local water, land and air but also understand the need for balance between our environment and a strong economy,” she said.
“We can truly have both; it does not have to be one or the other. I am an inclusive person who knows how to lead and will bring your voice to the table on social and economic issues.”