A Better Niagara is a non-partisan, non-profit organization with a mandate to encourage civic engagement and municipal public participation in Niagara. The group was founded by a coalition of local residents frustrated by the nature of politics in Niagara who joined together to offer a new vision for politics in our communities.
Drawn together by a mutual desire to see integrity, transparency and accountability in municipal politics we are committed to a Niagara that is more democratic, more equal and more open. We empower local residents who share a common vision for A Better Niagara. Whether residents choose to run for office or simply want their voice heard in the decisions made about their own communities, our group will support and encourage everyday citizens who want more accessible, accountable and honest government leaders who, above all, serve the needs of the residents who put them in power.
A Better Niagara is run by a steering committee and also features several subcommittees that are made up by a number of Niagara citizens. Our membership is inclusive and non-partisan. Meet some of our key figures:
Sean Polden, Executive Director
Sean Polden is a Founding Board Member and Executive Director of A Better Niagara. He uses his experience in organizing, through federal, provincial and municipal elections and public issue campaigns, to encourage others to make the changes they want to see within their communities. He hopes to provide current and future leaders the tools and skills to build a community that is inclusive of all.
A social entrepreneur and Top 40 Under 40 alumni, Sean was the Campaign Director for the successful Get Niagara GOing campaign in 2014. Over the past 15 years, Sean has worked on countless campaigns, winning some and losing others, while always relying on using current campaign tools and techniques.
Ed Smith, Director
Liz Benneian, Communications Chair
Liz Benneian is a former journalist and newspaper editor who has been leading advocacy and environmental educational organizations since 2004. Active in her community, Liz has volunteered with several service groups and has provided help and advice to community-led groups around the Province and abroad. Liz has also volunteered on four successful municipal council candidate campaign teams here and in her previous community.
After leading a successful fight against a planned incinerator in Niagara, Liz became concerned about the lack of good governance, especially at the Regional level, in this area. She is pleased to be a part of A Better Niagara, a group of citizens who are working to engage and inform citizens and to support and endorse good candidates in the next municipal election.