Mayor considers outside help for social media management

Two women aligned with Mayor Bernadette Clement's election campaign take in the first council meeting on Monday, Dec. 12, 2018. Karen Torrie-Racine is a campaign volunteer while Katie Verhoeven is part of a social media management firm. Clement is thinking about hiring someone to manage her social media. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

CORNWALL – Mayor Bernadette Clement is strongly considering hiring someone to manage her profile on social media.

During Cornwall City Council’s first regular meeting Monday night, two people aligned with Clement’s election campaign – Karen Torrie-Racine and Katie Verhoeven – were busily working on their cell phones and snapping pictures.

In an interview with Cornwall Newswatch after the meeting, Clement was asked whether she has an image team working behind the scenes.

“I actually don’t, but I’m thinking about whether I should have somebody help me with social media. Big Catch Communications helped me during my campaign, helped me with my social media. I don’t have any formal relationship anymore and thinking about whether I should,” Clement said.

Katie Verhoeven is a business strategist with Big Catch while Karen Torrie-Racine was on the volunteer group for the election and continues to work with Clement.

“I’m still considering whether I want to have some help. I’m not decided yet,” said Clement, who is also executive director of the SDG Legal Clinic, which has put a deputy director in place at the clinic to help Clement balance her workload.

Clement said Facebook was “really important” during the campaign and “may still be something that a mayor can do to encourage community engagement.”

Clement would still like to do door-to-door canvassing – possibly every quarter – to stay engaged. “Just to stay on top of what people are thinking and the best way to reach out to people is in person.” She says Torrie-Racine has agreed to help.

The mayor added that there hasn’t been a Cornwall mayor who was also an active Facebook user while in office.

The last two Cornwall mayors – Leslie O’Shaughnessy and Bob Kilger – had a basically non-existent social media footprint.

Clement said any social media management would be paid out of her own pocket.