The BC Greens have named their candidate to run in Kamloops-North Thompson in the Oct. 24 provincial election — a day the prospective MLA intended to get married.
Thomas Martin, who works in forestry, was acclaimed as the Green candidate on Tuesday (Sept. 29).
Martin works as a wildfire project manager for Cabin Resource Management, which involves leading various wildfire-related forestry projects, including wildfire risk-reduction projects, community wildfire protection plans and forestry operations.
Born and raised in Vancouver, Martin studied natural resource sciences at UBC and in 2011 moved to Kamloops to work as a wildfire fighter.
After graduating from UBC, he continued to work as a wildfire fighter while continuing to find other work, which included wildfire research and working on Revelstoke’s community wildfire protection plan.
In 2016, Martin left wildfire fighting to pursue professional forestry work. This took him around the province — planning harvesting in coastal old-growth forests on Vancouver Island, flying drones for surveys in Clearwater, delivering training in Dawson Creek and firefighting during the 2017 and 2018 forest fire seasons.
Martin noted he was proud to work with members of the Canadian Armed Forces on a fire near Merritt in 2018.
Despite the snap election being called for the same day, Thomas and his fiancée still intend to marry in a small civil ceremony on Oct. 24 in Kamloops.
"I work in forestry and I want a better future for our natural resource sector,” Martin said in a party press release.
“I believe we can have a resource sector that strengthens rural communities through economic development, makes evidence-based ecologically sound decision and strives for reconciliation and collaboration with Indigenous peoples.”
Martin said he believes provincial policies can address issues like housing affordability, the opioid crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said climate change is the defining issue of his generation and stressed the need for urgent action to address the unfolding emergency.
Martin is facing incumbent MLA Peter Milobar (B.C. Liberal) and Sadie Hunter (B.C. NDP) in the campaign. Deadline for nominations is Friday, Oct. 2, at 1 p.m.