There is a new person at the helm of the Comox Valley Regional District board of directors.

She is Village of Cumberland councillor Jesse Ketler.

Ketler was elected chair at the CVRD’s inaugural meeting on Nov. 5.

“I feel that I have a lot to offer as chair and I’m looking forward to being able to guide the board,” Ketler said.

She takes the reins from Courtenay Mayor Bob Wells, and realizes she has big shoes to fill.

“He did a great job,” Ketler said. “I was a little skeptical because it’s a lot to handle (being) board chair and the mayor, but he did a wonderful job.”

The CVRD board is made up of mayors and councillors appointed from their areas and elected representatives from the electoral areas. 

CVRD directors serve for a four-year term, and the directors elect the chair and vice-chair position each November.

Along with Ketler being elected as chair and Arzeena Hamir was re-elected as vice-chair. 

Both will serve in these positions for the next year.

Ketler said that by being elected chair, she hopes to bring Cumberland to the forefront.

“I think Cumberland has been kind of off in the bleaches a little bit, so it’s nice to, as a representative of Cumberland, bring Cumberland back into the fold and hopefully bring everybody together.”

Ketler said the CVRD provides “a lot of services to the valley,” adding that the board has laid out a blueprint for future planning.

 “The board’s done a great job of listening to the people and we’ve come up with four strategic priorities based on that: fiscal responsibility, the climate crisis, community relations and First Nations relations.”

The CVRD is a federation of three electoral areas and three municipalities providing sustainable services for residents and visitors to the area. 

For more information about the CVRD visit www.comoxvalleyrd.ca.