Municipal Election Candidate Highlight- Diane Therrien, Town Ward


Diane was attracted to Peterborough by Trent University, where she came to do her master’s degree.  She fell in love with the city and wanted to stay; however, like many graduates in her circumstances, she found it was difficult to land a good job. Undaunted, she persevered and now the residents of Town Ward can benefit from her abundance of sound ideas and her sustainable vision for the city.  She is just the kind of bright energetic young urban professional Peterborough needs on Council to ensure a better future for Peterborough.

Diane has a wide range of experience that has prepared her for the role of Councillor. She has worked as a Policy Advisor for the Provincial Government, a Teaching Assistant at Trent University, a Program Coordinator and Youth Worker for a Community Centre in Hamilton, and with the JustFood program at the Peterborough YWCA. Currently, Diane is the Facilitator of Community Education and Engagement for the Peterborough Poverty Reduction Network, where she is drafting a strategic plan for poverty reduction in Peterborough city and county.

Diane has based many of her ideas for improving the sustainability of Peterborough on her knowledge of other Ontario cities such as Kitchener-Waterloo and Hamilton.  Both of these cities are currently favoring a rejuvenation of their downtowns while creating jobs by attracting the millennial generation to live and work there.  Kitchener has become a centre for high tech businesses like Google Canada, which has just expanded their offices there.  Hamilton’s McMaster University is opening a new Health Campus in the heart of the city, creating jobs and bringing the student medical campus downtown.

Meanwhile, Peterborough City Council has allowed Shopper’s Drug Mart to build a second large single story building at Charlotte and Alymer without requiring them to add additional floors to add to residential spaces in the downtown.  Diane believes the city needs to require large business like Shopper’s Drug Mart who are looking to develop in Peterborough to include residential units and other mixed-use zoning to re develop and revitalize the city core.

Her other ideas for a progressive and forward thinking Peterborough include:

  • Complete streets and walkable neighbourhoods;
  • A vibrant downtown where local businesses thrive;
  • Increased support for homegrown businesses, the cornerstone of any healthy community;
  • Increased access to recreational activities and spaces for people of all ages;
  • Sustainable, mixed-use development that increases density and promotes healthy living;
  • Better snow removal policies, so that everyone, particularly seniors and those with mobility challenges, can get around safely in winter;
  • More civic engagement among citizens and council members.
  • The Parkway is an antiquated idea, and should not be built.

Diane has been an active member both of the Peterborough and Trent community since moving here.

She has been attending Council meetings since 2013 and has spoke to Council on a number of issues including poverty reduction, the Parkway project, and use of the City’s contingency fund.

She has volunteered with many organizations including:

  • Trent University Alumni Council
  • The Kawartha World Issues Centre (Website here)
  • Trent University’s Teaching Awards Committee
  • The Frost Centre Student’s Association at Trent
  • The New Canadians Centre’s Multicultural Canada Day
  • GreenUP’s Depave Initiative (Click here for article)
  • The Peterborough Folk Festival (Happening August 22-24, visit their websitehere)
  • The Community Race Relations Committee
  • Trent University’s Alumni Association
  • Active Participant in the YWCA’s Women in Politics session

It’s time to get involved.  Find the candidate(s) in your ward who has a vision for Peterborough beyond urban sprawl and more roads to support them.  Volunteer to work on and/or contribute to their campaigns.  Don’t sit back until it’s too late; this will be a defining election for the future of Peterborough!

Contact Diane at:
Or visit her website:

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