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Niagara College Community Employment Services 905-641-2252 ext 4663

ACL Leader in Focus – Nicki Lumsden

Nicki graduated from the University of Ottawa with a double degree in Sociology and Women’s Studies. When she returned to Niagara after university, she joined her mother, Kate, at RE/MAX Welland Realty. Now a Broker, Nicki has spent the past seven years building her real estate career while making community-giving a pinnacle of her business. She is actively involved in the Niagara Association of Realtors on the MLS and Technology Committee and serves as a member of the Port Cares Board of Directors.

Combining her passion for Port Cares with her expertise in housing, she aims to bring a creative outlook to the conversation about housing affordability.

This year, Nicki welcomed her first daughter Sloane and has been enjoying every moment of this new adventure of motherhood.

In your view, what’s the most important attribute of a leader?

In my view, the most important attribute that a leader can have is recognizing and fostering the strengths of their team. A leader should emphasize a culture that encourages collaboration and one that encourages team members to think creatively and outside-the-box. A leader does not look only look for opportunities but creates them. Leaders are constantly evolving and improving.

How do you define civic leadership?

Civic leadership is a commitment to your community. It is about creating opportunities for social change and impact and encouraging others to actively participate. I believe we have a responsibility to ourselves and our community to create opportunities that inspire change and impact.

Why are you personally motivated to explore civic leadership?

I have been fortunate enough to grow up in a secure and stable home where my parents have encouraged civic engagement. This experience led me to understand the responsibility that those of us with privileges have in paying it forward and investing in the wellbeing of our community members who may not have access to such opportunities. This is why I am so passionate about my work at Port Cares. Port Cares aims to provide opportunities related to safe housing, food security, education, and job training to community members in need. I believe that in order, for our community to be vibrant, it is necessary for everyone to have secure access to the foundations of life, including food, housing, and education. I have a passion to organize and encourage others to support this cause and believe, that people want to help others and build better communities, but they need to be asked and in a way that resonates with them. I can create those opportunities for others to be involved in creating communities that thrive.

What, in your view, is the most significant issue/opportunity facing our community? Why?

Affordable Housing.

A home provides the stability and security that is important for an individual’s success throughout life.

For example, research indicates that students who experience homelessness or who are precariously-housed underperform throughout school.

We also know that high housing costs affect individuals’ ability to afford health care and food, thereby affecting their quality of life. Housing issues go beyond the individual, impacting the health of our communities.

January 27th, 2020