Norman Wiebe has thrown his name into the hat as a nominee for the United Conservative Party in Red Deer South.
Growing up in Red Deer, Wiebe did his schooling here and joined the reserves at 17 and then the army at age 18.
He studied at Red Deer College, taking economics, and later got a job working for Border Paving and Johns Manville before eventually setting up his own business doing finanacial planning called Swordsman Financial.
Wiebe also happened to be involved in the political world for a long time.
He categorized himself as a Klein PC.
“When things started going off the rails I quit and there were a number of people who formed a little group called the Alliance Party and I was a part of that and eventually we merged with another group called Wildrose and we became the Wildrose,” he said.
He added that he used to sit on both the Red Deer South and Red Deer North boards for the Wildrose and covered various positions over the years. He was also president of each one at different times.
“I’ve done a lot of policy work over the years and I ran in the 2015 election for the Wildrose for Red Deer South.”
He was also on both boards for the UCP for Red Deer South and North until just recently when he registered himself for the election, withdrawing from both boards.
Currently residing in Deer Park, Wiebe said that he’s a fairly ordinary guy.
“I’ve got a little bit of variety in my life experience, I understand work ethic, I understand where most people are coming from. I’m certainly not one of the wealthy elites,” he said with a chuckle.
“It’s been very disappointing for me over the years watching politicans wasting taxpayer’s dollars foolishly and just thinking how hard it is for us to earn these dollars and then just see them frittered away.”
He added that because of working in the financial industry and also due to bad policy from the last government, he saw a lot of people liquidating their life savings trying to pay their bills.
“I’ve been involved in politics a long time and I can’t stomach the thought of this and it’s just strengthened my resolve that much more to get in there and fix things.”
For Red Deer specifically his concerns are the courthouse for one.
“We absolutely need to get that expansion underway as quickly as possible and I would like to see not just a building erected but I would like to see judges appointed and activated immediately,” he said.
He added that Red Deer Regional Hospital is another pressing issue.
“Red Deer Regional serves a massive area, it’s not just the City of Red Deer, we’re servicing all of Central Alberta. Thinking that to get decent cardiac services you have to go to Edmonton or Calgary and if you live in this region you’re going to have less access to the same kind of services, it’s not right.”
He said with Red Deer College getting the go ahead to become a polytechnic university, they need to expand their ‘university’ and have full degree-granting across all subjects.
“I would love it if my children could go to Red Deer College and complete their entire university education in economics or engineering or whatever sciences and do it all in Red Deer.”