Surrey First Education announces candidates, including Garry Thind, for 2014 civic elections


Garry Thind
Garry Thind

SURREY First Education on Thursday announced its slate of six candidates for November’s election.

Seeking re-election in 2014 are current School Board Chair Shawn Wilson, Vice Chair Laurie Larsen and trustee Terry Allen.

Joining them will be former school trustee and Surrey city councillor Gary Tymoschuk, along with current District Parent Advisory Council President Bob Holmes and Surrey Rotary President and local realtor Garry Thind.

“Our Surrey First Education team has a wealth of experience across many sectors and 45 years of combined service on the Surrey School Board,” says Shawn Wilson. “Our motivation is simple – we want the best education for the children of our community, and to assist teachers with the tools they need to be successful.  The addition of three strong voices from the community will benefit our team and the residents of Surrey.”

Garry Thind has been a resident of Surrey since moving from India more than 15 years ago. Garry is well known in the South Asian community for his dedication and hard work towards the non-profit charity Pingalwara where he has been involved since 2001. He is the current President for the Rotary Club of Surrey and is involved with other community charities and local sports organizations. Garry is an electronics and communications engineer by training and currently an active realtor with the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board.


[VOICE adds: Thind was elected Finance Chair of the B.C. wing of the federal Liberal Party at its 2013 Biennial Convention.]


Gary Tymoschuk served one term on School Board between 1996 and 1999, followed by two terms as a Surrey city councillor between 1999 and 2005. He is currently the Vice President of Operations for the Credit Counselling Society, a non-profit charity that helps Canadians solve debt problems and better manage their money.  He is the past chair of the Surrey Crime Prevention Society, where he has also held the positions of board chair, vice chair and treasurer.

Bob Holmes, who has lived in Surrey and White Rock for 30 years, is the current Co-President of the Surrey District Parent Advisory Committee (DPAC).  He has been active in his children’s school PACs holding the positions of president, vice president and treasurer over the last 10 years. Holmes has also participated on a number of school district committees including budget, Montessori and French immersion.

“We are thrilled to be able to add three high-calibre candidates to the Surrey First Education team for November’s election,” says Vice Chair Laurie Larsen. “All three are highly regarded residents of Surrey, and we are excited to have them stand with us. Together, we look forward to carrying on a tradition of excellence in the Surrey School District.”

Surrey First Education is a coalition based team with representation from all parts of the political spectrum.  Each member puts aside personal agendas in order to make decisions that are based on the best interests of Surrey students.