Rawlson King worked hard to secure nearly $9 million for investments in Rideau-Rockcliffe parks and greenspace over the past three years to improve quality of life.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, it is clear that City parks and green spaces were more popular than ever, so Rawlson will continue to ensure that a key priority will be to bring more recreational opportunities to residents.
Dollars he secured in the last term of Council contributed to the creation and restoration of parks in the Ward, as well as towards the upgrade of park equipment and amenities.
Rawlson was proud to oversee the completion and opening of the new Lola Park in Overbrook as well as the redevelopment of New Edinburgh Park. He was also gratified that money was allocated to replace the aged play structure and gazebo at the St-Laurent Complex in Castle Heights, as well as the playground at Helen Redpath Thomson Park in Cummings. Improvements were also made to Lindenlea Park and a new play structure was funded at Queen Mary Street Public School in Overbrook.
Though construction has been delayed due to the pandemic, funds were secured and plans are underway to build Eugene Martineau Park and Veteran’s Park in Wateridge Village in the near future. Rawlson will continue to advocate for a recreational fieldhouse to service the Wateridge Village community.
If elected to another term, Rawlson is committed to improving more parks and amenities in the Ward, especially for youth, families and seniors in high-priority neighbourhoods. Currently, Rawlson is working with Youth Ottawa to help that organization secure funds to renovate the fieldhouse at Gil O Julien Park in Overbrook and establish a new centre that will provide community members with access to programming in sports, recreation, nutrition and entrepreneurship. He will also work towards enhancing Alvin Heights Park in conjunction with the Manor Park community.
To make the Ward more ecologically sustainable and protect biologically significant areas, Rawlson will work with the community to de-pave areas and plant more trees, such as in Bathgate Park in Carson Grove, in an effort to create more innovative outdoor spaces. He has also committed to working with residents in Rockcliffe Park to restore the Village Green to its Centennial splendor.
Rawlson King has served as Councillor for Rideau-Rockcliffe since 2019, after winning a historic by-election to become Ottawa's first Black City Councillor. A strong believer in public service, Rawlson previously served as President of the Overbrook Community Association, a board member at the Rideau-Rockcliffe Community Resource Centre, and was the first co-chair of the Ottawa Police Service Community Equity Council. He is a current and founding Board member of the Rideau Winter Trail.
During the 2018-2022 Term of Council, Rawlson served as Chair of the Built Heritage Sub-Committee and was also appointed to the Standing Committee on Environmental Protection, Water and Waste Management. He also served on the boards of the Ottawa Police Service, Crime Prevention Ottawa, Ottawa Community Housing Corporation, Ottawa Public Library, Ottawa Community Lands Development Corporation and Quartier Vanier BIA. He also sat on the City's Information Technology Sub-Committee.
Recognized for his volunteer work, he won a United Way Ottawa Community Builder of the Year Award in 2018, conferred during National Volunteer Week. He also was a recipient of a Black History Ottawa Special Recognition Award, bestowed during 2021 Black History Month.
Before his election to public office, Rawlson was an entrepreneur and communication professional with over 20 years private sector experience in marketing, strategic communication and high-technology market research.
Rawlson earned a Bachelor of Journalism (with concentration in Legal Studies) and an M.A. in Communication from Carleton University. A proud Carleton alumnus, he and his wife personally established the Rawlson King and Linda Grussani Scholarship for Indigenous, Black and Racialized Students at Carleton University in 2022.