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Mazier seeks Conservative nod

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Dan Mazier is seeking the nomination for the Conservative Party of Canada for the riding of Dauphin-Swan River-Neepawa.
The former Keystone Agriculture Producers (KAP) president admitted seeking the nomination was not something he had considered, until MP Robert Sopuck announced he would not run in the next election.
Soon after Sopuck’s announcement, Mazier received a phonecall urging him to run.
It was during seeding time and the 54-year-old grains, oil seeds and specialty crop farmer had a lot of time on the tractor to think about it.
“And then I got another phone call about a couple weeks later. I was just nicely finishing up seeding,” Mazier said, noting this caller explained why he should consider running.
“I do have extensive experience in working with government, as a lobbyist and advocating on behalf of farmers.”
Mazier served as KAP president since 2015, after a four-year commitment as vice-president.
Prior to that, he held a position on the KAP board from 2001 to 2006.
Additionally, Mazier was one of the founding members of the KAP Young Farmers Committee and was the western representative on the Canadian Young Farmers Forum.
“I’ve been to Ottawa, I’ve been to the provincial legislature and know that side of the system,” he said, adding he knows how it works and who to contact. But the political party side of Ottawa is new to Mazier.
“It’s been a good learning curve and I’m impressed with what I’ve experienced so far,” he said.
Mazier feels the timing is right to throw his hat into the ring, as his wife Leigh just retired from teaching and their two adult children are living in Saskatoon and Portage la Prairie.
Employment with KAP meant Mazier was non-partisan, so when it came time to consider running for nomination, he was pleased with what he learned about the federal Conservative party in Manitoba.
“I’ve been very, very impressed with just the party grassroots of the system. I had no idea it was like this,” Mazier said.
“Just the network of grassroots people on the ground, in the party or even just friendly to the party.”
Many of his friends are not card-carrying Conservatives, but Mazier is converting them.
The nomination process is to get Mazier to the point where he can run in the election.
“So that’s why I’m reaching out,” he said, explaining he is developing a team to sell memberships and potentially, create a campaign team for the future.
Whoever sells the most memberships, Mazier said, usually wins the nomination, but members must show up to the nomination meeting.
That is a challenge in a riding as large as Dauphin - Swan River - Neepawa, Mazier said, particularly during harvest time, which is when the meeting is scheduled.
Mazier and his team has to sell memberships within 21 days of the nomination meeting, as that is the minimum time required for members to be eligible to vote.
Nominations are not yet open he noted, but Mazier declared now, because the federal-provincial-territorial ministers of agriculture meetings are occurring now.
“I’m still on the Canadian Federation of Agriculture’s board, representing KAP as president,” Mazier said, adding he could not sit, in good conscience, in Vancouver, knowing he was going to let his name stand for nomination.
Mazier feels he has a good network, as a result of his work with KAP, and he wants to share his experience of the process.
“I think I bring something to the table for all constituents in the riding,” Mazier said.
“I can do this, I know I can do this.”
While the constituency is large, he pointed out, as president, he represented all of Manitoba and the constituency takes in about four of 12 districts of KAP.
Mazier was a founding member of Elton Energy Co-operative, a provincial renewable energy initiative and renewable energy is an interest of his.
In his role with KAP, his focus has been on argiculture, rural development, water managment and other environment issues.
Mazier is a graduate of the University of Manitoba’s Agriculture Diploma program, as well as a fourth class power engineer.
For more informtion, contact him at 204-720-4646 or by email at danmazier7@gmail.com.

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M. A. Nyquist
REPORTER
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