Friday, October 14, 2016

Jim Prentice (1956-2016)

Jim Prentice, the 16th Premier of Alberta, has died at age 60 according to multiple reports.

While details will be coming fast and furious in the coming days and weeks, and memorials will pour in for the man and the public figure, I will offer relatively little by comparison.

I worked with Jim Prentice while he was the Leader of the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta and I was its Regional Director for South Calgary.

We weren't close. I wasn't in his inner circle. He didn't seek my counsel, and we didn't see eye to eye on very much about how to run a political organization.

None of that matters today.

Jim Prentice was a son. A husband. A father. A public servant who could have - and did - earned a lot more in the private sector than in the public sector, for a lot less hassle. And yet, he left his comfortable position in 2014 to run for and win the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party in Alberta, taking a huge pay cut in the process.

No matter what anyone has to say - myself included - about his political legacy, this was a man who wanted to serve his fellow citizens, and did so with a keen mind and laser-like focus. His service is worthy of our respect, and his family's loss is monumental.

This is not a time for politics. This is a time for appreciation for the man's service to us, and for his loved ones to mourn.

Rest well, sir.

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