Former Rocky View County (RVC) councillor Jerry Arshinoff, a strong and controversial advocate for transparency, fiscal responsibility, and equal opportunities, passed on July 6 after a battle with cancer.
A memorial service is being held on Monday, July 17 at the Springbank Heritage Club on RR 33 beginning at 2 p.m.
Even before being elected to RVC council, Arshinoff was vocal in his views of county affairs.
He was involved in the preparation of the Central Springbank Area Structure Plan. Later on, he joined with others to express concern about the county's decision to borrow to finance water and sewer utilities servicing commercial development in Balzac East.
Arshinoff sought further accountability for RVC council decisions and favoured moderate and sustainable development.
He served one term on RVC council, coming to office with an overwhelming win over Cindy Turner in 2013. He lost his re-election bid in a close race against Kim McKylor in 2017 by 16 votes (520 to 504) that required a recount.
Never one to shy away from controversy, he was vocal on many issues but had little success in swaying the majority of councillors to support his initiatives.
He strongly opposed the development of a $42 million county administrative building, sought the creation of an RVC voters' list, and wanted fair and equitable transportation offsite levy, He wanted to see the county debt load reduced and sought easier access to RVC information for county residents without having to resort to FIOPing the information.
With a career in education, he unsuccessfully sought election to the board of trustees of Rocky View Schools for Ward 5 in 2021. Judi Hunter was successfully re-elected.
During that election, his record publically came under fire by the anonymous group called Albertans for Property Rights and Democracy, which called his term on council controversial and questioned his endorsement of several Rocky View County candidates.
He was born in Montreal five minutes after his twin brother Steve on April 9, 1950 and moved to Calgary in 1971. He earned a Bachelor of Science from McGill University, a Bachelor of Education from the University of Calgary, and a Master of Education from the University of Portland.
In his lifetime, he had several notable careers: principal of the Plains Indians Cultural Survival School (PICSS), where he fought for equal academic opportunity, executive director of PICSS Society, investment advisor, and politician.
He is survived by his beloved wife Diane (AKA Chubs) of nearly 44 years, children Ciana (Darcy), Bradley, Carley, Andrew (Kristin), and Brittany, grandchildren Jack, Alena May, Julia and Elinor, siblings Linda Mamelak (Morty), Steve (Barbara) and Lloyd (Debi), mother-in-law Viola Brummund, brother-in-law Brian Brummund, sisters-in-law Sandra Yanay (Ken) and Brenda Moors, numerous nieces, nephews, and Bruce.