City councillor Mike Kelch is retiring from elected office when the current term ends in October.
“I was a youngish 44 years old when I first ran for election. Today I am closing in on 66 and I’d like to try a different path. I just feel like it’s time. I also think it’s possible to stay too long in elected office and I didn’t want that to be me,” he said today.
Kelch has never lost an election, running in and winning six consecutive terms since 1997.
In the 2014 election, the Imperial Oil retiree finished with the second-highest number of votes among 20 city-only candidates.
Kelch is widely regarded as a stabilizing influence at City Hall, especially so during the current and sometimes fractious term of council.
“Joy and I will be forever grateful to our many supporters in the community over the years, and especially our families and friends who have stuck with us during both good and challenging times,” he said.
As a private citizen, he added, he will continue to help advance Sarnia’s progress.