Brad Sperling has been elected chair of the Peace River Regional District.
Sperling, who represents Electoral Area C, unseated incumbent chair and Tumbler Ridge Mayor Don McPherson in a vote at the PRRD board meeting Nov. 10.
The PRRD board, which is made up of four rural and eight municipal directors, elects a new chair each year. The chair is in charge of meetings and serves as the face of the district to both the public and other levels of government.
Sperling will be the first rural director to hold the position since 2014.
Fort St. John Mayor Lori Ackerman was chair before McPherson, winning the position on a coin flip after she and Area B director Karen Goodings tied on multiple votes.
Dan Rose, director for Area E, was elected vice chair by acclamation.
Sperling said the regional district needs to be more visible in the community, and suggested that as chair he would meet quarterly with MLAs and the region’s MP. Visibility has been an issue for the PRRD after a communications study found many people don't understand what the regional district is.
The PRRD covers all land in B.C. east of the Rocky Mountains, up to the border with the Northern Rockies Regional Municipality.
It is one of 27 regional governments in the province, and is in charge of parks, regional water and sewer, building inspections and fire protection, among other services.