Council Members



Mayor - Vacant



Councillor - Vacant


 Councillor Lorne Benson

  • Advisory Planning Commission (alt)
  • Bulkley Valley Regional Pool and Recreation Centre Advisory Committee (alt)
  • Chamber of Commerce
  • Fall Fair Management Committee
  • Municipal Insurance Association of British Columbia
  • Smithers Health Committee (alternate)


Lorne was born and raised in Smithers. Together, he and Karen have pursued successful careers while raising their daughters who are now young professionals on their own career paths. Lorne has 32 years of experience with insurance, including claims operations and loss portfolio management. His is a chartered member with the Insurance Institute of Canada. 

As well, Lorne has also been involved in a progression of volunteer activities. More recently his experience has included partnership projects with municipalities and industry, two years as chair of the Smithers Advisory Planning Commission and two previous terms on council. 

As a long time resident Lorne’s recreational interests are primarily outdoor oriented, exploring and fishing throughout the region.  While on Town Council Lorne’s focus will be finding a balance between effective, sustainable fiscal management while addressing community issues.

Cellular: 250-847-3857


 Councillor Greg Brown

  • Bulkley Valley Lakes District Airshed Management Society
  • Bulkley Valley Regional Pool and Recreation Centre Advisory Committee
  • Cycle 16 Society
  • Finance Committee Chair



Greg Brown was first elected to council in 2014 and now is serving his second term.

Raised in Kitimat and since 2004, a resident of Smithers. Greg has experience working in different fields for different sectors including government, non-governmental organizations and the private sector. He has geological engineering degree from the University of British Columbia and is trained as a  group facilitator. He has served on the board of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

He raises his two kids, Liam and Evan, with his wife, Christine, who owns and operates a cafe that seeks sustainability by sourcing ingredients locally.

Councillor Brown can be reached:

Cellular:  250-847-3143
On Facebook:


Councillor John Buikema

  • Finance Committee Vice-Chair
  • Municipal Insurance Association of British Columbia (alt)
  • Smithers District Transit Committee
  • Smithers Library Board 



John moved to Smithers in 1999 to become principal of Bulkley Valley Christian Elementary School. He was an educator/administrator until 2015, and then began working as a bookkeeper/tax preparer at Todd Larson & Associates. John has served on the Smithers Public Library Board since December of 2016, frequently held leadership positions at Smithers Christian Reformed Church, and also worked/volunteered for a brief time at Broadway Shelter.

John and his wife Sylvia have developed a deep appreciation for Smithers & the Bulkley Valley. They treasure time with their children and grandchildren, and also enjoy kayaking, hiking, traveling, and spending time with close friends and out of town family.

Councillor Buikema can be reached:

Cellular: 250-847-0277


Councillor Casda Thomas

  • Advisory Planning Commission
  • Bulkley Valley Regional Pool and Recreation Centre Advisory Committee (alt)
  • Northwest Regional Advisory Committee (Northern Development Initiative Trust) (alt)
  • Partnering for Healthy Communities (P4HC)
  • Smithers Art Gallery
  • Smithers Health Committee
Casda was elected to Council in 2018. She and her partner first came to Smithers in 2005 and she has been actively involved ever since through the business community, volunteering and recreation.

Casda runs a real estate appraisal business and holds a Diploma in Urban Land Economics from UBC’s Sauder School of Business.  Prior to becoming elected, she also served 7 years on the Advisory Planning Commission.

Casda and her husband Matt are raising two daughters in Smithers, Veda and Stevie. They enjoy spending time outdoors together, walking, biking, canoeing and gardening.

Councillor Thomas can be reached:

Cellular: 250-877-9366


Councillor Frank Wray

  • Bulkley Valley Museum
  • Fall Fair Management Committee
  • North West Regional Hospital District Board (alt)
  • Regional District of Bulkley Nechako Board (alt)
  • Smithers District Transit Committee
  • Tenas Coal Project - Working Group/Mine Review Committee


Councillor Wray can be reached: