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Dudy announces Kamloops mayoral run

The two-term city councillor is the second civic politician — and fourth person overall — to announce a bid for the top political job locally
Dieter Dudy mayoral announcement
Dieter Dudy announces his mayoral campaign on April 4, 2022. The civic election is scheduled to be held on Oct. 15, 2022.

Surrounded by a group of notable Kamloopsians, two-term city councillor and farmer Dieter Dudy, announced on Monday morning (April 4) his intention to run for mayor in the Oct. 15 civic election.

It’s not the first time Dudy, who moved to Kamloops in 1989 and turns 67 later this month, has made such an announcement. In 2011, he challenged then-incumbent mayor Peter Milobar and came close to winning, finishing 235 votes behind Milobar.

On Monday, Dudy announced his mayoral candidacy amidst wind gusts by the high water marker in Riverside Park on the South Thompson River.

“I can’t believe it’s been almost 10-and-a-half years since I last had this announcement,” Dudy said. “You know, butterflies don’t go away even after 10-and-a-half years. In any event, there’s been a lot of speculation and rumours with regard to what I’m going to be doing this October and I want to set that to rest. … I plan on being the next mayor of Kamloops.”

Following his previous run for mayor, Dudy said he gained confidence because he came so close and had only launched a campaign to ensure Milobar did not run uncontested. He said he knew he would run again.

Since then, Dudy has two council terms under his belt. He said his calm demeanour makes him right for the job and he hopes to lead Kamloops down a road of prosperity and opportunity.

As for what issues will be important in the next term, Dudy cited homelessness, the opioid overdose crisis and business recovery post-pandemic. He is also in favour of a Kamloops Centre for the Arts.

In a video posted to his campaign website, Dudy noted his desire for a public market and gathering place, as well as building and maintaining Tournament Capital amenities. He said he would release more information on his platform later.

Dudy said he is in talks with someone about taking over management of his Thistle Farm in Westsyde, but noted he will continue to be at the Kamloops Regional Farmers’ Market on Saturdays.

“So, you can always visit your mayor at my stall,” he quipped. “Not just for vegetables.”

Dudy is the fourth person to announce an intention to run for mayor since Mayor Ken Christian announced on Family Day that he will not seek re-election.

Fellow Coun. Arjun Singh has also announced, as has former councillor Ray Dhaliwal (who served on council for one year after being elected in the October 2017 by-election) and downtown businessman Reid Hamer-Jackson.

Asked what makes him think he can beat Singh, Dudy said: “I came into this knowing that it was a risk, but I also came in this knowing that I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t think I could win it. I believe that I’ve got — I’m trying to be professional here — I just believe that I’m more balanced in my approach and that I have broader appeal, so I feel I can get the masses on my side.”

Managing Dudy’s campaign is Henry Pejril. Pejril is president of the Kamloops Sports Council and has run successful political campaigns in the past, including for Terry Lake, Peter Milobar and Ken Christian. Speaking with KTW, Pejril explained that the people with whom he works are his friends.

“It’s more about the person,” he said. “The politics comes second.”

Pejril said he likes Dudy’s approach, describing him as someone who brings people together, but one who can also be firm when decisions need to be made.

Lake, who previously sat in the mayor’s chair, was also on hand Monday. He told KTW he has known Dudy for years and has been following him on council. He said a good mayor is a community champion and someone who brings together a team because the mayor ultimately only gets one vote, as do each of the other eight city councillors.

“I think he’s the right balance of business interests, addressing social issues and kind of bringing people together around a common cause,” Lake said. “I think you need someone that can build a consensus.”

Randy Sunderman has sat on two boards with Dudy, including Community Futures and Kamloops Voters Society. He described him as a “good problem solver.”

Bryce Herman, past-president of the North Shore Business Improvement Association and spokesman for myriad community events, added: “His position on council, he looks at things from 30,000 feet, but he also doesn’t wait forever to make his decision, which I appreciate.”

More information on Dudy’s campaign can be found online at dieterdudyformayor.com.