Pictou County 2020 takes “BOLD” stance


STELLARTON — Pictou County 2020 has decided it’s time to be bold.

The local group hosted a gathering last Thursday that attracted more than 50 people for a series of discussions about future steps for the organization and the community.

Susan MacConnell, Nancy MacConnell-Maxner, Janice Fraser and Sally O’Neill are part of the original group who led the event at the Nova Scotia Community College.

The group was founded in 2014 in response to the province’s Now or Never report. Jaime Smith was among the original members who decided to bring the wider community together through conversations; the group adopted a boldness theme and discussed what it means to underscore the group’s and the community’s next steps.

“Many times throughout those early months we asked ourselves and each other: ‘Who gave us permission to do this?’” MacConnell-Maxner said. “The answer is no one and no one needed to.”

Ashley Cormier was among those who attended and has been part of the 2020 process since.

“It’s nice to see people are still engaged to make the community better for everyone,” she said. “I liked how some of the themes in the discussions were about community and being true to your values that are right for you.”

People were asked what it means to be bold in the community and to put in one or two words key ingredients to achieve boldness. Responses included connection, vulnerability, perseverance, resilience and authenticity.

“I was impressed with the way they were engaged,” O’Neill said.

Cathy Munro was among first-timers taking part in a 2020 event.

“I think in a small way it’s celebrating,” she said of the exchange of ideas during the session. “We don’t celebrate enough.”

From left: Luke Young, Cathy Munro and Nanda Shirke share experiences during a breakout session.

(Goodwin photo)