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Killam's Electoral Rollercoaster: Residents Head to the Polls May 13th

The Town of Killam, Alberta, is heading to a by-election on May 13th.

In February, former Mayor Ben Kellert resigned from the council. What was initially slated as a straightforward electoral process has morphed into a tale of intrigue and uncertainty, marked by last-minute withdrawals, unexpected twists, and now four determined candidates vying for the opportunity to serve their community as Councillor.

The saga began in February when Kellert tendered his resignation, bidding farewell to over six years of dedicated service with a mix of nostalgia and gratitude, "For just over 6 years, I have been honoured to serve this wonderful community in a way that I had never even dreamed that I would be able to.  This opportunity has brought me so much joy and satisfaction. 

"For this, I will be eternally grateful," Kellert stated in a news release on the Killam website.

His departure left a void in Killam's leadership, prompting the need for a by-election to fill the vacant mayoral seat.

Enter Roger Obrigewitch and Councillor Rick Krys, the initial contenders in Killam's electoral drama.

As the by-election loomed on the horizon, the two candidates stepped forward. However, fate had other plans in store.

On March 19th, just a day before the nomination deadline, Councillor Krys withdrew his candidacy due to incorrect advice from the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) regarding his council resignation. With only Obrigewitch remaining in the mayoral race, the stage seemed set for an uncontested victory.

Yet, the plot thickened.

On the morning of March 21st - a day after the nomination day - Roger Obrigewitch submitted his own notice of withdrawal, leaving the mayoral seat once again up for grabs. The abrupt turn of events left Killam without a clear path forward.

Amidst the chaos, a decision was reached. A second by-election date was set, with both the mayoral and now a councillor positions now on the ballot.

Councillor Krys, undeterred by the earlier setback, seized the opportunity to pivot his campaign and announced his candidacy for mayor. On April 15th, with no other contenders in the mayoral race, Councillor Krys was officially acclaimed as the next Mayor of Killam, marking a new chapter in the town's political landscape.

As Killam prepares to head to the polls once again, the spotlight now shifts to the race for the open council seat. Four candidates have emerged as contenders for the coveted position: Dean Berrecloth, James Clark, Barry Paydli, and Teala Westbrook. Each brings own unique blend of experience, passion, and vision for the future of Killam, promising to represent the interests of the community with integrity and dedication.


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