David Miller has an extensive history with the Ukrainian community, where he has displayed qualities of loyalty and perseverance. His community networking brought him to the Ukrainians 15 years ago when he embarked on his musical career with “Baturyn” a Ukrainian marching band based across from Christie Pits. Year after year you could catch a glimpse of the dashing blond English-Irishman celebrating with his community, clad in a turquoise and yellow uniform marching and beating to his own drum at parade events such as the Santa Clause and the Bloor West Village Ukrainian Festival. “ One of the considerations in choosing the blue and yellow colour combination for my ad campaign, was that they were the same colours as the Ukrainian flag, and of my band Baturyn”, said David.
David Miller has an economics degree from Harvard, and a law degree from the University of Toronto. He was elected to Metro Council in 1994, served on the TTC board, and in 1997 was elected City Councillor for, and long time resident of High Park/ Parkdale which includes the “Bloor West Village” recognized as the hub and pivoting point of Ukrainians in Toronto. Here David had the opportunity to establish a successful working relationship with many Ukrainian organizations such as the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, Ukrainian Social Services, The Children of Chernobyl, The Bloor West Village Ukrainian Festival, and the Ukrainian Consulate just to name a few. He has diligently represented the Ukrainians at City Hall, and he’s always visible at fundraisers and functions developing diplomatic ties with dignitaries including Yuschenko past Prime Minister of Ukraine. “It has been a tremendous privilege in working with the Ukrainian Canadian community for the past decade. They have made tremendous contributions to this city, the country and abroad” said David.
Marion Barszczyk of Ukrainian Social Services said “Miller has been a strong advocate for individuals as well as for the common good of all local residents. David is certainly aware of the need for supportive programming to assist vulnerable seniors living in their homes and family members who require a range of services to facilitate their efforts to care for frail elderly relatives, and works together with the community and all levels of government to ensure suitable services are available to the public.”
“ David Miller has always had an open door policy for the needs and concerns of the Ukrainian community, and has proudly represented them at City Hall” said Maria Szkambara a long time activist and energetic internationalist who advocates Ukrainian causes and has devoted much of her career to establishing and developing cross-cultural relationships among various governmental, economic, health, and educational entities.
Among his list of achievements, he succeeded in ensuring that the Ukrainian Internment Camp once located in Exhibition Place during the First World War is remembered. David has been actively involved with the annual Bloor West Village Ukrainian Festival supporting and assisting the committee’s needs for a venue that has grown to become North America’s Largest Ukrainian festival with over 250,000 attendees this year, in which diplomatic doors were open to Chicago celebrating the cross twinning of Toronto, Chicago and Kyiv. He triumphantly negotiated residential condo sites with developers ensuring the community was involved in the process, providing housing that will benefit the local economy. Mr. Miller is currently assisting in the installation of the Ukrainian Famine Genocide Monument slated for next year east of the Humber River in the Western Beaches, commemorating the seven million plus that died in Ukraine under Stalin’s regime in 1932-33.
In a recent interview with David, he fondly recalled one of the more ironic moments at City Council. An altercation erupted in Council Chambers regarding some proposal that was being challenged. Mayor Mel Lastman stepped up to the plate visibly annoyed and frustrated with David said, “You’ll never be Mayor of Toronto because you say dumb and stupid things”.
David Miller has taken a strong stand on the waterfront. He is the only candidate that doesn’t want the expansion of the Island airport. He also wants a clean city including ethics in a clean government, vows to make transit his top priority, and wants the provincial and federal governments to address Toronto issues.
David in his summation said, “I will continue to support Canadian Ukrainians, and make it a high priority to strengthen the Ukrainian community and it’s links between Toronto, Kyiv, Ukraine, and the Diaspora.”
For details of David Miller’s campaign, please check his website @ www.millerformayor.ca
Document URL: http://www.infoukes.com/politics/toronto_2003/miller/index.html
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Originally Composed: Thursday October 30th 2003.
Date last modified: Thursday October 30th 2003.