Stephen Dafoe was born in Belleville, Ontario in 1962 and spent the first 40 years of his life in that Town. Dafoe moved to Alberta with his wife Bonnie in 2002 and lived in Hinton for the first four years. Soon after moving to Morinville in 2006 he wanted to become more involved in the community.

Though he was worked as a salesman, professional magician, small press book publisher and published author, Dafoe has spent his recent working years as a journalist. He worked for the Hinton Parklander, Morinville Mirror and Sturgeon Light before starting The Morinville News as an online daily and print weekly in 2010.

An active community volunteer, Dafoe’s company has won a Community Service Award from the Morinville and District Chamber of Commerce, and he has personally received the Town of Morinville’s Partnership Award in 2012 and the Unsung Hero Award in 2013. Dafoe has been a member of the Morinville Public Library Board for three years and served as Board Chair since 2012.

Why I love it here?

In 2006 my wife Bonnie and I moved to Morinville and decided to call it home. Soon after, I told her the next time I moved would be when they put me in a pine box.

Like many residents, I love it here. Like many residents, I cannot quite put my finger on just why because there is much to love about the community. I certainly love that I live in a town where I can actually know all the shopkeeper’s names. I love that I live in a town where I’ll pass at least a dozen walkers, joggers, bikers or skateboarders on a weekend walk, and each and every one will say hello as they pass by, or at least give me a friendly nod. I love that we live in a community where groups – large and small – work hard to improve the quality of life for our residents. And I love that we live in a community where groups and individuals cross generational gaps to work together.

It is that sense of connection and interconnection that makes many of us feel rooted in Morinville, and it is that foundation of belonging that motivated me to commit to making sure we grow responsibly, maintaining those things we love about our town.

What about the newspaper?

Omer St. Germain, our first mayor, was the owner of Le Progres, Morinville’s first newspaper. A lot has changed here and with the news business since 1905. We live in a society that would not accept a mayor or member of Council reporting on the matters of Council. As such, the covering of Council and most provincial matters falls to other writers working with the publication.

Can you even own a
newspaper and be on Council?

Yes you can. You can also be a doctor, lawyer, bricklayer.

I had several conversations with Town Administration on the legalities, legislature and conflicts should I run. Prior to any discussion it was self evident that I would no longer cover the Council beat, but there was never a question on my eligibility to run.

Despite that effort there was a reluctance to regard me as an eligible candidate by one publication and my campaign received no coverage during the election from them. The documentation below shows the opinion of legal council and municipal affairs on the matter of my eligibility against the fact my company owns and operates a newspaper.