Johnny Strilaeff, president and CEO of Columbia Basin Trust.

Here come the 2020s: CBT president Johnny Strilaeff

A series featuring local leaders writing their predictions for the future

Columbia Basin Trust President and CEO Johnny Strilaeff says engaging with the public will be a priority in 2020. He’s asking people to imagine the possibilities for the future of this region.

This coming year the Trust is turning 25. It’s a chance to celebrate all that we have been able to accomplish together with people and communities.

It’s also a time to recognize and honour those who saw an opportunity in 1995 to create this unique, regional organization that would support the efforts by the people of the Columbia Basin to create a legacy of social, economic and environmental well-being in the region most affected by the Columbia River Treaty. The focus then was on the future, and this year, we’ll be asking residents to look ahead to the next 25 years.

We are entering the last year of our five-year Columbia Basin Management Plan. This plan sets out 13 primary strategic priorities and has shaped our programming and initiatives since 2016. Last year, we delivered a record $62.6 million in benefits to our communities through more than 70 programs and initiatives supporting over 1,750 projects.

The Trust supports regional priorities that enhance our quality of life and make this region such a desirable place to live. Significant investments in affordable housing, creating tech-enabled spaces, broadband, ecosystem enhancement and environmental education, child care, and arts, culture and heritage are only a few examples of the work we are doing to support regional priorities.

The Trust’s focus as we move into 2020 is engaging with people in the Columbia Basin about their bold and innovative ideas for the future of this region. We’ve already started some of the engagement by speaking with our board, staff and advisory committees. Starting in the spring, we will be hosting conversations in communities and online about where people see opportunities.

What will this plan look like? What are we hoping to achieve? What can we learn from the past that will inform how we work in the future? What do we want our region to look like five, 10, 15, even 20 years from now? These questions will form the basis of our discussions with residents in 2020. Watch for more details at engage.ourtrust.org.

Lastly, the Trust will be hosting our symposia in the fall. For the first time we are hosting the events in two locations to allow more people to take part: one in Trail, Oct. 2 to 4 and one in Golden Oct. 23 to 25. It will also mark the final stage of our community engagement process and the start of reporting back on what we heard. Save the date and visit symposium.ourtrust.org for more details.

2020 will be an exciting year, and I look forward to celebrating and engaging with people from Castlegar to Fernie to Valemount.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Kootenay snowpack nearing record levels

High snowpack can mean a greater risk of flooding in spring, say forecasters

Calendars for a cause: Linocut calendars raise funds for Kalein Centre

The last few calendars and cards are available at Cowan’s Office Supplies and Zinnia Textiles

VIDEO: Kootenay Patricks, Montreal Canadiens play to the crowd in Nelson

The charity game was a spectacle from puck drop

City of Nelson creates student opportunity

“We didn’t realize how much we needed this person until we met them.”

Whitewater’s Adam Kuch to compete at Freeride Junior World Championship

Kuch is one of four Canadians competing in his division

VIDEO: Mass coronavirus quarantines seen in China won’t happen in Canada, authorities say

‘If a case comes here, and it is probably … it will still be business as normal’

Province’s oldest practising lawyer shares advice at her 100th birthday party

Firefighters bring Constance Isherwood a cake with 100 birthday candles

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Diners’ health tax not catching on in B.C., restaurant group says

Small businesses look for options to cover employer health tax

B.C. comic wins judgment after club owner slaps cellphone out of his hands

Incident happened last summer when Garrett Clark was performing in Abbotsford

Mayors call for ‘calmness’ as highway rockslide cuts Tofino, Ucluelet off from supplies

Ministry of transportation expects to open road for “essential travel only” from noon-8 p.m. Friday.

Owner surrenders dog suffering from days-old gunshot wound to B.C. SPCA

The dog was also found to be emaciated and suffering from a flea infestation

B.C. man dies after police called for ‘firearms injury’ in rural Alberta

Victim is 30-year-old Greater Victoria man, say police

Most Read