Val Litwin for BC Liberal Party Leader

Change in the air

...but not the kind you think.

Meeting with Anthony Everett (CEO of Tourism Vancouver Island) and Janet Docherty (co-owner of Merridale Cidery) for lunch

Meeting face-to-face with people on the ground has been the most gratifying part of this race, as we engage and inspire in 87 ridings.

My recent trip to Vancouver Island was no exception.

I had an insightful chat with Patrick Tier over an early morning chicken hash at The Ruby in Victoria. Patrick is the owner of Citizen Clothing, a small business that sells ethically-sourced products from their storefront and online.

Patrick said the pandemic “changed” him.  But not in the way I first thought. Yes it was a brutal year for his business — but it got him thinking differently about BC’s “long game”.

“For the first time in my life,” reflected Patrick, “we ate dinner as a family every night for a year. I didn’t even have that experience in childhood”. This past year and a half has changed Patrick’s take on the future he wants to help build for his 13-year-old daughter. Patrick is looking at his career, family-time, and community differently now — and the priorities that inform them.

Change really is in the air in BC today – as a general theme and concrete reality.

My conversations with groups and leaders up and down the Island confirmed that. Changing workplaces. Climate change and the intensifying wildfire seasons. Changing economies. The need for change in our healthcare system — for seniors in particular. The desire to change Island seats when it comes to political representation.
Folks had lots to share on why the BC Liberal Party lost its last remaining seat on the Island in 2020 (not the fault of that intrepid and inspiring MLA, by the way). But the message boiled-down to this: the Party needs to take a new approach. The old playbook and mindset isn’t cutting it anymore. It can’t.

"The BC Liberal Party needs to take a new approach. The old playbook and mindset isn’t cutting it anymore."

One interaction drove this home for me. I spent the evening with folks in the riding of Parksville-Qualicum. I met Ken and Maureen, a lovely couple, and stalwart long-time supporters of the BC Liberal Party. They remember the glory days of the Party — they helped create them with diligent door knocking and attending every riding event they could. I’ve been talking a lot about how 61% of the population in BC is now under 40 – but how British Columbians of all ages are looking for a change in their province and Party

Ken said, “Val, Maureen and I are in our 80’s …and we want change more than anyone!”

A reinvigorated BC Liberal Party isn’t just about a new leader. And it certainly isn’t about changing the base. It’s about defining the new values and a priority set that will meet the challenges of today.

I’m working hard every day to be the face of that change. I’d like to hear from you. Get in touch and let me know what a redefinition of success looks like for you and your community.


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