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R.F. Staples School counselor wins seat on Town of Morinville council

Maurice St. Denis was the highest vote-getter in the Oct. 18 municipal election
WES - Maurice St Denis
After 15 years at R.F. Staples School as a student counselor, Maurice St. Denis will serve as a Town of Morinville councillor for the next four years.

WESTLOCK – After serving R.F. Staples School for the last decade-and-a-half as a student counselor, Maurice St. Denis has found another way to give back to the community and is one of three new Town of Morinville councillors following the Oct. 18 municipal election. 

St. Denis has spent the past 15 years working in Westlock at RFS as a counselor, helping support hundreds of students. While planning to continue his counselling career, he is now looking to serve his community as a municipal politician.

“I want to create positive change,” said St. Denis Oct. 27, one day after being sworn in. “I really want to be a bigger leader and serve the community I live in and the community that my wife and I are raising our family in.” 

St. Denis received the most votes out of any councillor with 1,564, followed by Ray White 1,512, Stephen Dafoe 1,491, Jenn Aheliger 1,465, Scott Richardson 1,392 and Rebecca Balanko 1,098. 

He has set his sights on economic development in the community, acknowledging that Morinville is a bedroom community as he himself works out of town. 

Through the COVID-19 pandemic, more people have been working from home instead of commuting which St. Denis believes has highlighted the need for more services in the community. He hopes to provide tax cuts to help attract new businesses. 

“We’ve had exponential growth population-wise over the past years, but the business growth hasn’t kept up. Morinville really needs to be attracting more businesses to keep people in the community,” he said. “We need more people to feel that they don’t need to travel to St. Albert to buy groceries. That should all be here.” 

Confident with the rest of the council being on the same page with issues effecting the community, St. Denis looks forward to his four-year term. He hopes that in his new position he can also help ensure residents' voices are heard. 

“People want to participate. They want to be more involved in decision making and they want to have a voice,” said St. Denis. 


Spencer Kemp-Boulet

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