Earlier this month Premier Wab Kinew travelled to Brandon to announce the establishment of a new Westman regional cabinet office to act as a liaison between families, businesses and community organizations in Westman and the provincial government.

The new regional cabinet office is being led by Jason Gobeil, a former school trustee with Brandon School Division (BSD), board member at Brandon University and community coordinator with more than 10 years of experience working directly in the areas of employment counselling, project management and community program development across the Westman region.

Head of Council for Boissevain-Morton, Judy Swanson, says she's very pleased with the opening of this new office as it strengthens the communication and collaboration between Westman and Winnipeg, bridging the gap between two city centers, but also two very distinct regions.

"Personally, I think it's a really good idea especially when we don't have rural representation in government," shares Swanson. "So, we really need to know that there is a bridge and that we can actually meet that gap.  So, I thought that it was very positive for the provincial government to consider opening an office here."

"Plus," she adds. "Brandon is a big city. It's the second largest city in the province and so it makes perfect sense."

"To me it's really good news for Westman and I do look forward to seeing how we can work together because we are in the great area of the province. Westman is just starting to really rock and so we really need the province to understand that we are moving forward, and I'm sure they will. It's a new beginning," adds Swanson.

Gobeil has volunteered his time serving on boards with BSD’s Indigenous Advisory Committee, the Westman chapter of the Interprovincial Association on Native Employment, the Brandon Bear Clan and the Brandon Urban Aboriginal Peoples’ Council and has put on events like 100 Men 100 Drums, which offered cultural connection and trauma healing for Indigenous men.

Gobeil offers a direct link for important provincial stakeholders in the Westman area with the premier’s office and each member of the premier’s cabinet.

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