Rachel and her husband Brad purchased their first home in Aurora in 1996 to settle down and raise a family. She has been serving the community for several years as an elected Municipal Councillor, through volunteerism, and as a small business owner. Prior to her victory in 2018, Rachel served on the local ratepayers association as an executive, attended many Council meetings and discovered firsthand the leadership changes that were needed at the municipal level. She succeeded in a win up against 28 other contenders. It was a proud, yet humble, moment for Rachel, since all the incumbents were re-elected and Rachel was the only new Council member to take the one vacant spot. Her success and track record earned her a re-election in 2022.
"As an elected municipal councillor, I am working very hard and remain extremely engaged with my constituents , who are very worried. Since covid 19, I have been involved with working groups, networking and round table discussions where I see the critical support needed from not only the municipal level, but also both the Federal and Provincial levels of government to guide and shape our future. I am genuinely concerned about the economic recovery of our country and the average family financial stability. We need to collaborate and find meaningful solutions to ensure we can live, work and prosper from our hard work. Economic recovery, attainable housing, sustainable growth, public safety and our mental health are all critical essentials families need at the ground level."
As an entrepreneur at heart, Rachel understands the commitment, passion and dedication it takes to be successful. Her business highlights include publishing, landscape design and finance. Her education in horticulture and landscape design led to 20 years of an award-winning business, She later transitioned into publishing with various Boards of Education as her primary client. Networking, building business relationships , grit, and getting to know your neighbour continues to be a natural and sincere character trait that has helped her succeed. "I feel that small businesses are going to be one of the keys to recovery in our Town. I own a small business and I know how hard it is and I understand the current source deductions, rent and property taxes ...so this is something that my background and expertise can bring to the table."
Rachel has spent her time on Council fighting for fiscal responsibility, especially during a time of crisis. She has not been afraid to stray from the pack and hold her ground to speak for the people.
"I have spent time on Council understanding the numbers and I understand you have to make tough decisions in a crisis to ensure we have spent our money wisely for today and our future generations"
Rachel is passionate about climate change and has recognized the urgency by her motions promoting. climate action such as; the development of a municipal Climate Lens, protection of Open Private Space & Parkland Designation, institute an Environmental Committee, review the Towns' Urban Forestry Study and encouraged staff to model after the Toronto Green Development Design Standards. In addition, she believes networking and education are keys to successful climate goals. In doing so, she has participated with the FCM Climate Leadership Course, Ontario Climate Caucus, and contributed to the Community Energy Plan working group.
“This is a victory in the right direction.The purpose of this climate action is to allow informed decision-making at the Council table that includes weighing in on the carbon impact, green development design standards, sustainable infrastructure, and protecting our Natural Capital Assets."
Rachel Gilliland is a hard working Councillor on the frontlines with the residents, involved with working groups, committees, Boards, networking and round table discussions, where she has seen the critical support needed from a municipal level, while collaborating with the Federal and Provincial levels of government, who guide and shape our future.
"I will continue to work tirelessly for you and represent your visions, policies and positive change for a brighter future in our town. I have spent the last year reaching out to residents engaging with the community by knocking on doors, asking for feedback and shared discussions on what I can do better. Through this process, I was able to find solutions to problems and am proud of the policies I created to address your needs."
"In order to achieve these goals it requires real commitment to research, keep developers to account, and build relationships with the community, stakeholders and other levels of governments. I love nothing more than diving into reports, questioning staff and stakeholders and having healthy debates around the Council table, followed by voting on decisions that make positive change for a betterment of our community."
As a successful Councillor, I understand the policies that affect us on the ground. I want to use this strength and experience to bring back common sense leadership as your next MP Candidate in AORRH. Let's bring it home!
Advocating for Common Sense Leadership
A big THANK YOU to Honourable Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, Christine Elliot for your discussion on the pandemic response and what to expect to help keep everyone safe. Thank you to the Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture, MPP Lisa MacLeod, for attending our group to provide your guidance, insights and grant assistance in a sector that has been the hit hardest the most. Thank you MPP Michael Parsa for helping to network these discussions, your leadership and commitment to our community.
The Joint Council Committee works along with Central York Fire Services comprised of Council members from both Newmarket and Aurora to ensure public safety, service delivery, budget and fiscal responsibility.
The CEP consisted of a Stakeholder Engagement component, followed by a Baseline Energy Study, Energy Map(s) and the development of a Community Energy Plan (CEP). The CEP identifies opportunities for green energy solutions and conservation measures meant to support local economic development and community objectives of energy and conservation, waste and greenhouse gas emission reduction.
Thanks to my motion, I was able to reinstate the Environmental Advisory Committee. "Therefore be it resolved; that a dedicated “Environmental Advisory Committee” be re-established to address ongoing climate change and adaptation initiatives, energy conservation, environmental matters and contribute comments to the Climate Action Plan."
I was chosen by FCM to participate in the implementation and planning of climate change initiatives in our municipality such as; procurement best practices, planning implementation, education, tracking GHG kpi 's and deliverables. The climate related resources and workshop discussions have proven to be very helpful, which has led to shared discussions with our climate analyst, planning staff, and our director of finance in regards to procurement and planning implementation. Public engagement will be a mission that I am committed to exploring with our communications department such as infographics, GHG education, sustainable living, idling or any green initiative or contribution. Developing measures that are clear to the public will be key to buy-in and help deliver/recognize successful goals.
As a member of the Climate Caucus, the organization acts as a unified voice for locally elected officials to advocate to higher levels of government. Our advocacy from 2021 is listed below, and we look forward to building off this as we move forward.
In Ontario the Ontario Climate Caucus has lobbied the province on:
- Investing in new energy technologies
- Green Development Standards
- Conservation Authority Act
Rachel has been committed to increasing community safety since her election. She continues to host Crime Prevention sessions to bring education and awareness on hot topics such as auto thefts and senior fraud. Creating community neighbourhood watches, reporting crimes and suspicious behaviour, and tracking the data crime portal are important safety tools.
Clean up Aurora
School assistance & chaperone
Terry Fox Run Aurora
Keeping Healthy and Active!!
I like to stay active in very many ways and I am not afraid of trying new sports or activities! I love playing soccer and basketball, but when that shut down due to the pandemic, there was not much to do. When rules slowly opened one of the few sports to open was curling! Now I am a curler!! I also share a new love for Pickleball, which is deemed the number 1 growing sport in North America!
Sports I participate in:
Basketball, pickleball, golf, curling, volleyball, tennis, soccer, winter skiing, waterskiing, swimming.
I like to volunteer in sport too! I have coached both basketball and soccer. I also managed a travelling elite softball team.
Rachel welcomes the opportunity to schedule a phone or video call and chat live to answer your questions and hear the issues that are important to you. Let Rachel know what matters to you.
Copyright © 2018 Rachel Gilliland - All Rights Reserved.