MLA Josie Osborne, bottom right, appeared at a Tofino council meeting for the first time since September to announce her resignation and thank the town’s council and district staff for their support on Nov. 26. (Andrew Bailey photo)

MLA Josie Osborne, bottom right, appeared at a Tofino council meeting for the first time since September to announce her resignation and thank the town’s council and district staff for their support on Nov. 26. (Andrew Bailey photo)

Mid Island – Pacific Rim MLA Josie Osborne officially resigns as Tofino’s mayor

Osborne submitted her resignation last week.

Josie Osborne has officially moved from local to provincial government as Mid Island – Pacific Rim’s new MLA tendered her resignation as Tofino’s mayor last week.

“It has been a privilege and honour to serve the people of Tofino as mayor since January 2013, and to work with three successive Councils. Each Council has been incredibly committed to excellent governance and service, and I have truly enjoyed working with each of the 11 individual councillors who have been in office while I’ve been mayor,” Osborne wrote in her letter of resignation, reviewed and accepted by Tofino’s municipal council on Nov. 24. “Together with a very dedicated staff at the District of Tofino, we have undertaken so many important projects and initiatives. I’m incredibly proud of the work we’ve done with the shared goal of building a strong and resilient community, making Tofino a better place to live for all.”

She said the highlight of her tenure was the “collegiality, respectful tone, and collaborative style of leadership” in council chambers.

“Serving in public office is not easy work, but our ability to work together really stands out during challenging times and has enabled us—as Council, staff, and the community-at-large—to tackle difficult, persistent and complex problems,” she wrote. “I look forward to continuing to serve the people of Tofino and the region in my new role as MLA, and to continuing to work with you and the District of Tofino. I thank all of you—and the councillors who served with me previously—and I wish you every success as you continue to work hard for Tofino.”

Council accepted the resignation during their Nov. 24 meeting, held via Zoom-based video conference, which Osborne attended.

“The thing I think that means the most to me is the way that we’ve been able to work together over the last seven-and-a-half years of my time on council and the tone of collaborative work supporting each other and the respectful decision making environment and being able to work for people in Tofino using that as the platform and the way that we conduct our business,” she said. “When you look around British Columbia and we look at other municipal councils and local governments, I know that in Tofino we have so much to be proud of in the way that we conduct ourselves and the way that we do our business. It’s been an honour and privilege. I’m really sad and sorry to leave, but I am also really happy to be able to continue to work with you in new ways as the MLA and I’m really looking forward to the next four years at least of my time and hoping that we’ll still be able to do an incredible amount of business together.”

Tofino’s acting mayor Britt Chalmers read a statement thanking Osborne for her service.

“Thank you for tendering your resignation in person and giving us the opportunity to speak our congratulations and our thanks,” she said before pausing as she became overwhelmed with emotion.

“You provided unfaltering leadership to this community on a daily basis. Your availability to everyone, your communication and your reputation of Tofino on provincial and sometimes national scales has been consistent and admirable.”

She added that the town’s councillors, especially novice ones who entered their first terms during Osborne’s tenure, benefited greatly from the mayor’s leadership style.

“Speaking for the newer members of council, your support as we joined this organization cannot be understated and has proved invaluable to all of us. You’ve helped to create and foster an environment of respectful, thoughtful and educated discourse and this is an incredible and rare legacy that we remain mindful of to keep alive and well,” she said. “It has been often repeated that it is bittersweet to have you moving from mayor to MLA, but we know so well that the tenacity and drive you will bring to your new job and how we as council and community will continue to benefit. We are grateful that you are only a phone call away…Congratulations MLA Josie Osborne. We wish you the best of luck in your new position.”

Osborne served three consecutive terms as mayor after first earning the seat running unopposed in a 2013 municipal by-election following the resignation of then-mayor Perry Schmunk. She retained her seat running unopposed again in 2014. In 2018 she faced two challengers for the position and received a whopping 85 per cent of the vote with 792 votes, defeating Jarmo Venalainen, 69 votes, and Omar Soliman, 52 votes.

Tofino is expected to hold a byelection in the New Year to elect a new mayor.



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

READ MORE: Tofino expected to wait until New Year to elect new mayor after Josie Osborne wins provincial seat

READ MORE: Mid Island-Pacific Rim MLA Josie Osborne named minister of municipal affairs

READ MORE: BC VOTES 2020: NDP Josie Osborne declared the winner in Mid Island-Pacific Rim riding

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the legislature, Jan. 11, 2021. (B.C. government)
Vancouver Island smashes COVID-19 high: 47 new cases in a day

Blowing past previous records, Vancouver Island is not matching B.C.s downward trend

Stand up paddleboarder Christie Jamieson kneels as a pod of transient orcas put on a dramatic show on Jan. 19 in the Ucluelet Harbour. (Nora O’Malley photo)
UPDATED: Vancouver Island paddle boarder’s orca encounter brings joy and outrage

Woman’s ‘best day’ criticized for disturbing the whales

Tofino’s library is currently located in the basement of the Tofino Legion building but talks are underway to build a brand new facility. (Andrew Bailey photo)
The District of Tofino has put new restrictions in place around alcohol at public events. (Westerly file photo)
Tofino puts new restrictions on alcohol at public events

Town’s council adopts Municipal Alcohol Policy.

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. (News Bulletin file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak declared at Nanaimo hospital

Two staff members and one patient have tested positive, all on the same floor

A long-term care worker receives the Pfizer vaccine at a clinic in Nanaimo earlier this month. (Island Health photo)
All Island seniors in long-term care will be vaccinated by the end of this weekend

Immunization of high-risk population will continue over the next two months

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

Comox Valley RCMP are looking for witnesses after the theft of a generator worth thousands of dollars. Photo supplied
RCMP asking Vancouver Island residents to watch for stolen generator

Vehicle may have been travelling on Highway 19

Most Read