After being diagnosed with cancer, Calmar Coun. Lin Rehn resigned from her post after only a year and a half.
“That was probably the hardest decision I’ve ever made in my life was having to put in my resignation for town council,” Rehn said. “It hit me harder than I thought it was going to.”
Coming from an Ontario city of 100,000 to an Alberta town of 2,000 was a big change, but Rehn said Calmar was welcoming and she came to know all her neighbours over her five years of living in the town.
Rehn quickly became an active community member involved in Communities in Bloom, the Recreation Board and the Economic Development Board
“I wondered how well I would do in a very small community when I wasn’t use to it, but I flourished here and hopefully I helped the town flourish,” she said.
Reflecting on her time in council, Rehn is proud of her willingness to challenge issues she felt were important and her willingness to hearing from residents about their concerns.
However, balancing the responsibilities of council member while undergoing cancer treatment made it difficult. “I can’t give the town citizens the attention they deserve,” she said.
While in office, she missed one meeting due to mandatory bed rest after surgery. Even though it was only once, she said that her treatments had created difficulties for fulfilling all her duties.
She ran for a seat on council three times and succeeded the last time. She ran in two by-elections, one in 2016 and another in 2017, which ended up with her being only five votes behind.
Then the general election was held in 2018, and although she initially was not going to run, her husband encouraged her to try a final time.
“I thought ‘how many times can I be rejected?’ But I was happy I ran the third time and I could be a part of getting the town moving and I brought some changes forth that I thought needed to be brought forth.”
Her short time in office did not afford her the opportunity to push through some of the agenda items she wished to be enacted or changed, yet she was happy with the time she did have on council and in Calmar.
“I really enjoyed my time in Calmar. I’m going to miss my time here, miss the friends that I’ve made and the people that I’ve met. It’s been a lovely time here; I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it.”