Jill Balser picks up where her dad left off

PC Candidate for Digby-Annapolis Jill Balser has big shoes to fill. They are shoes she knows well . . . because they belong to her father, Gordon.

When she is speaking with residents on their door steps, she’s often told: “The last time I voted PC, it was for your Dad.”

“I have been overwhelmed by the amount of respect people have for my Dad,” Jill said.  “I hear it on the doors every day.”

Gordon Balser was the PC MLA and cabinet minister for Digby-Annapolis from 1998 until 2003. He earned a reputation as a straight-talking representative who always put the interests of his constituents first.

His job kept him away from his family more than he may have liked, but Jill said his absences never bothered her,

“I remember as a kid, I never felt upset that he was away so much,” she said.  “I always had the feeling my Dad was doing something important for the community. While I didn’t know I would one day run to be MLA, my Dad’s work definitely influenced my decision to work in community development.”

Jill earned a BSc in Environmental Biology from the University of New Brunswick Saint John and a postgraduate diploma in Sport and Event Marketing from George Brown College. She is working toward completing her Master’s Degree in Community Development.

Balser is the Project Lead for the local Turning the Tide initiative at Inspiring Communities, a non-profit organization.

"I am honored to think my daughter would consider following in my footsteps.” Gordon said. “I believe she can pick things up where I left off and represent our area as they should be represented -- responsibility and respectfully."

Father and daughter are spending a lot of time together, pouring over voting data, driving the roads of Digby-Annapolis and meeting voters. A lot of time.

“I know I’m driving him a little bit crazy,” said Jill. “But I haven’t seen him so excited about something in a long time. His excitement and energy is giving me confidence.”

PC leader Tim Houston and the Solutions Express will join Jill and Gordon Balser on the campaign trail on Friday at 3 pm.