A woman who grew up in MacTier wants to be Parry Sound-Muskoka’s next Member of Parliament.

Meghan Shannon is seeking the riding’s Conservative Party of Canada nomination. Shannon says she’s making this decision after careful and thoughtful consideration, and with the full support of her loving family.

Growing up in a small town, Shannon says, gives her firsthand knowledge and experience with the challenges and opportunities that exist in “beautiful northern communities.”

Shannon majored in geography at the University of Guelph, has a Master’s of Environmental Studies in Tourism Policy and Planning from the University of Waterloo and a PhD in Geography and Environmental Management, specializing in rural economic development. She says it would be a privilege to have the opportunity to apply that knowledge to improving the lives of those living in Parry Sound-Muskoka.

In her announcement, Shannon says she believes the federal Liberal government is “impeding economic development and job creation by imposing high taxes and ever-increasing regulations on small businesses and major industries.” Shannon had tossed her hat into the ring in Waterloo earlier but lost the Conservative nomination to Jerry Zhang on April 2nd.

This will be the first time in 13 years that local conservatives will be nominating a new candidate, as current MP and former Conservative member Tony Clement has said he will not be seeking re-election.

President of the Parry Sound Muskoka Conservative Party of Canada, Stephen Darling, says he has heard from multiple people expressing interest in wearing Tory blue in the upcoming federal election.

“I’ve heard from a dozen people at this stage,” says Darling. “Their levels of interest are running the full spectrum to just asking a simple question about do you have to be a member of the riding to run, to people who have set up meetings with me and had very lengthy conversations.”

Huntsville Mayor Scott Aitchison is one of those who has publicly expressed an interest in running. The federal election is happening on October 21st unless Prime Minister Justin Trudeau decides to call it early.