Incumbent Abbotsford school trustee Preet Rai is running for a fifth term in the upcoming election on Oct. 15.
Rai has been on the board of education for fourteen years.
“It is an honour and privilege to serve as a school trustee and it is only possible with public support,” he said in a press release sent out this week.
“My upbringing instilled both a desire and a sense of responsibility around family, community involvement and education. It was a driving factor when I first ran for school trustee, and it is the reason I am seeking re-election.”
A chartered accountant from India, Rai immigrated to the United Kingdom in 1992, where he worked for the Scottish government. He came to Canada in 1995 and has been working for the provincial government since 1997.
“Having a global perspective, I have always taken a keen interest in community, social and cultural activities,” he said. His wife is a local teacher and their children all attended public school here.
“In my 14 years of being a school trustee, I have particularly enjoyed visiting schools throughout the district,” he said. “I have relished reading to Kindergarten students and answering well-thought-out questions by middle and high school students. Even being in a cold dunk tank on sports days was chilly at the time but has warm memories now. Every time we engage with our students, we have an opportunity to engage them and have a positive effect on their lives.”
He also said his interactions with students at community events, where he has been able to see them proud of the own volunteer work, has given him his own energy and focus.
Rai said he is focused on providing constant advocacy for the best opportunities to prepare students for success and to achieve their dreams over the next four years.
Rai’s community involvement is not limited to his role as a school trustee. He has served on the Clearbrook Kiwanis, Community of Character Council, Abbotsford Youth Commission, AbbyFest board, Cycling for Diversity, MSA Museum Board, the Reach Board, Literacy Matters Board, Sister City Committee, the Canuck Place Campaign Executive Committee, and the South Asian Task Force to fundraise for the new Canuck Place Hospice built in Abbotsford in 2014.
He said he has immensely enjoyed organizing over 100 volunteers for AbbyFest and watching the community come together to celebrate its diversity.
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