Board of Directors Elections

Date: February 28, 2022

Voting for District 1 & District 3 is NOW CLOSED.

Meet Your District 1 & District 3 Candidates

Below are the names and biographies of the candidates seeking election in:

  • District 1 (Brandon/Maxa)
  • District 3 (Killarney/Ninette/Cartwright/Swan Lake/Pilot Mound/Winnipeg)

If you are a member in District 1 or District 3, please exercise your democratic right to vote in this election.


Graham Garden – District #1

I have lived in Brandon most of my life except for 10 years (1990-2000) when I played professional hockey in England and Germany. I graduated from Crocus Plains High School and attended Brandon University briefly before pursuing my dream of playing professional hockey.

I became a licensed REALTOR in 2000 and have worked with RE/MAX Valleyview Realty In Brandon and area ever since my wife (Christie) and I became part owners in 2015 and I currently hold director position of President of RE/MAX Valleyview Realty Ltd.

I currently supervise and guide multiple REALTOR real estate businesses along with my other partners toward success. This is done ethically and with integrity.
I believe my experience, reputation, and diverse relationships within the Brandon real estate, commercial and business community is what I can bring to the table and be an asset to this board.

I have experience with big brands. RE/MAX is the world’s largest and most productive real estate company in the world. We live and work by the motto “you’re in business for yourself but not by yourself”.

I have volunteered in Brandon Youth Hockey over the years as a coach. Coached and won a high school Championship with Vincent Massey High School.

We operate the only Miracle Real Estate office in the province. Our office has 100% participants in Children’s Miracle Hospital. Remuneration from every agent and every deal to this charity. Over $18,000 donated to this charity in 2021. We support the United Way and other local charities.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.

Don Kostesky – District #1

I have a long history of Credit Union involvement. My father was a founding member of the Rossburn Credit Union which was the basis of the current Fusion Credit Union. I joined Westoba Credit Union in the 1990s when I resided in Rivers. I moved to Brandon in 2019 where I currently reside.

I have extensive business experience in farming, the grain and seed trade and I have served on many community-based organizations as chairman and treasurer as well as serving as a Director of the Canadian Seed Trade Assoc.

During my tenure as CEO of a major seed co-op, I was responsible for developing and implementing major financial obligation of the co-op.
I have been involved as a volunteer with the Rivers Volunteer Ambulance Service and Rivers Voluntary Fire Department; served on the board of directors of a local golf club for six years; served with St. John’s Ambulance for one year before Covid hit.

Currently, I am in my second year as President and Chairman of the Board of Brandon Seniors for Seniors Co-op Inc.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.

Garnet McBurney – District #1

I have lived in Brandon since 1990, and have been a Westoba member since 2016. I have run my own bookkeeping/controllership firm since 2007, This role has allowed me a unique opportunity to firmly understand the business community in Brandon and southern Manitoba.

In early 2019, I joined the Board of Directors of Westoba Credit Union and have since progressed to the position of Board Chair. I have had many enjoyable (and some challenging) experiences in this Board position, but I enjoy my role immensely and would very much like to continue this work.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.

Vivian McKenzie – District #1

I am a retired Adult Education Teacher, with a master’s degree in education. I lived in Brandon for 17 years and received my degrees from Brandon University. I moved back to Brandon in 2021, from Cranberry Portage, where I last worked for Frontier School Division.

I have a strong commitment to community work and have served on the board of the Norman Regional Health Authority, The Child & Family Resource Centre, Flin Flon NDP Association, and others. I have assisted in organizing and participating in a variety of community events over the years. I am a strong supporter of union organizations and I believe my education and skills in planning and organization; communication and board experience would be an asset to any board.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.

Douglas Kimani – District #3

I am a business and technology consultant with over 15 years working across various sectors such as financial services, agriculture, healthcare, and advertising. I have gone through the director’s training during my tenure at Westoba credit Union and I gained a lot of knowledge, experience, and relationships that I can leverage at Westoba CU as well within the credit union system.

Professionally, I bring a lot of experience in digital business transformation, innovation and operational management that the Credit Union will need.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.

Roméo Lemieux – District #3

As a Manitoba farm boy, (and since 2012, a Winnipegger), I adopted a work ethic and strong community mindedness that defined my 50 plus years of involvement in education and business, first as a teacher in rural Manitoba and Brandon, then as an Educational Consultant for the Council of Ministers of Education of Canada and numerous School Divisions across the province.

As a Faculty Supervisor of 20 years with the Brandon University Faculty of Education, I communicated effectively in both English and French with colleagues and all levels of administration to advance the vast diversity of goals. During my years of service to the community as an Alderman for the City of Brandon, I embraced the role of leadership, co-sponsoring the Forum on Poverty and the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity. I hold strong convictions that meeting the needs of the disadvantaged among us is not only desirable but mandatory in the reach for corporate and community success.

*Nominee is endorsed by the WCU Board.