Former city councillor Donna Macdonald's memoir Surviving City Hall will come out in the spring.

Former city councillor Donna Macdonald's memoir Surviving City Hall will come out in the spring.

Donna Macdonald has survived

Long-time city councillor’s city hall memoir Surviving City Hall comes out in Spring 2016.

Former Nelson city councillor Donna Macdonald’s soon-to-be released memoir Surviving City Hall will be many things to many people, but she doesn’t want readers to think of it as an exposé.

“It’s not a tell-all, mostly because I couldn’t possibly tell it all,” Macdonald told the Star, shortly after signing her contract with Nightwood Editions.

“I’ve worked really hard to be respectful in the stories I’ve told, and it’s not my goal to get revenge or hurt anyone. This is about the lessons I learned, and about what good leadership looks like, what it’s constraints are. I’ve been very kind.”

Macdonald was first elected in 1988, and spent 19 years in public office before retiring in 2014. She worked with five different Nelson mayors Gerald Rotering, Bill Ramsden, Gary Exner, Dave Elliott and John Dooley and participated in many of the city’s most ambitious projects.

“I worked on the new Lakeside soccer fields, and it was really important to me we maintained public access all along the waterfront when the Prestige Resort was built.”

She’s proud of her work with the Nelson Housing Committee, and her track record on affordable housing. She’s also been involved in supporting climate change initiatives.

“I just about killed myself working on the community complex, getting that new arena and the various renovations done in 2005,” she said.

And along the way, she’s learned quite a few lessons. That’s what she’s hoping to share with readers, who don’t necessarily have to know anything about Nelson or municipal politics to take away meaningful insights.

“My target audience is general readers, people who love communities and want to understand how municipal government works, the mechanics of it. This book is meant to encourage engagement.”

Surviving City Hall will be released in spring 2016.

This story will appear in the upcoming issue of the West Kootenay Advertiser.