By Erika Mathieu
Local MLA (Cardston-Siksika) Joseph Schow will be taking on a new cabinet position within the provincial government.
The MLA was sworn in as the Minister of Tourism and Sport on June 9 during a ceremony which saw the swearing in of the Province’s new cabinet following the UCP’s re-election as a majority government on May 29.
Schow said while he has yet to receive a mandate letter on the precise scope of the portfolio, he said that at a high level, the role is about selling Alberta as a province.
“I am really excited about this opportunity because I get to talk about sports; something I’m very familiar with and talk about selling the province. Alberta has always been to me, you know, a beacon of hope and opportunity but also one of the most beautiful landscapes that you’ve ever come across. I consider myself very fortunate to be in this file and honoured that the premier has asked me to manage it.”
Schow said many of the file details are still forthcoming, but said he is looking forward to exploring options and opportunities to grow the tourism sector in southern Alberta.
“There’s no doubt that Canmore, Banff and Jasper get a lot of attention; they are very beautiful parts of our province and attract a lot of tourists from around the country and from around the world. As someone who lives down in Cardston and a stone’s throw from Waterton Park, I mean that area certainly gets attention down in our neck (of the woods).”
“In this file I am expecting to get a chance to see a lot more of what Alberta has to offer and try to promote that to the rest of the country and the rest of the world.”
“We just saw one of the largest film productions in HBO history with ‘The Last of Us’ filmed out here, and I think that Alberta has a lot more opportunity to attract more projects like that,” and added the growing interest in Alberta as a filming destination is, “a great opportunity for us to sell what Alberta has to offer,” adding the show helped give visibility to southern Alberta and other parts of the province.
Schow said it is “no secret” why projects such as “The Last of Us” are choosing Alberta and hopes to see this interest and investment continue with future media projects down the line.
Schow was appointed as House Leader on October 24, 2022, and will continue in this role.
The First Session of the Thirty-first Legislature of Alberta will convene on Tuesday, June 20, at 1:30 in the afternoon.