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WARD 1: Gibson returned; Caton wins tight race for second seat

Thai Mac finishes third in hotly-contested Ward 1 race
Ward 1 councillors-elect are incumbent Dan Gibson and newcomer Erin Caton.

One of the new faces on city council belongs to Ward 1 councillor-elect Erin Caton, who joins re-elected incumbent Dan Gibson in representing the ward.

Gibson received 2,375 votes, followed by Caton with 1,418.

“I’m absolutely honoured. I’m thrilled,” said Gibson of being elected to the role of councillor for a third consecutive term. “I’ve been proud to stand tall for the residents of Ward 1 for the past eight years and I look forward to representing them for four more.”

Gibson was first elected in 2014 and voted back in as councillor in 2018.

"(It feels) surreal but amazing," Caton said of being elected. "Every time I met somebody at the door or someone talked to me online and they were supportive, it just meant the world to me.

"Now I get to give something back to them and do my best to get Ward 1 the representation that it really deserves."

The next term of council will be officially sworn-in during a Nov. 15 ceremony at city hall.

First and foremost to Gibson are the “front door issues” people in the ward are talking about, such as housing availability and affordability, as well as frontline issues such as parks and road projects.

“At the end of the day, current homeowners who live here want a responsive councillor, a councillor who is going to pick up the phone and respond to their concerns and try to get them in touch with the right people at city hall,” said Gibson, noting residents are also concerned about investment in the ward, parks and more. “Of course the larger horizon stuff around climate change and other universal issues that we’re facing matter.”

While Gibson led the vote race all night, the contest for second place only became clear as the final polls were counted.

Thai Mac finished third, with 1,247 votes, followed by Michelle Bowman (1,229), Dhruv Shah (783) and Chidi Nwene (581).

Earlier in the night, less than 10 votes separated Caton, Bowman and Mac, but Caton pulled ahead at the end.

"I actively ignored all the numbers until the final vote so that I didn't have the roller coaster experience," Caton said. "I was just trying to be around all the people who helped and my daughter and just be chill until it actually came in for the real tally."

Prior to the election, Gibson was joined by Bob Bell in representing Ward 1 on council. 

Bell announced in February he wasn’t seeking reelection this time around. He was first elected as councillor in 2006 and voters thrice returned him to office.


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Richard Vivian

About the Author: Richard Vivian

Richard Vivian is an award-winning journalist and longtime Guelph resident. He joined the GuelphToday team as assistant editor in 2020, largely covering municipal matters and general assignment duties
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