Running under the NDP banner in Livingstone-Macleod is Kevin Van Tighem.

Van Tighem was the first candidate named in the riding, announcing his intention to run in October and receiving the official nomination in November.

He's long been involved with conservation efforts, and most recently with the Livingstone Landowners Group in opposition to coal mining on the eastern slopes of the Rockies.

It's an issue he's been hearing about over the last six months, but not the only one.

"We've been to over 2,000 households now, me and volunteers on our committee, all across the riding and had countless conversations and there are a lot of issues concerning people. It's certainly not just coal. It's people's difficulty accessing public healthcare, it's the cost of living that's really putting a lot of families in stress, people's concern about schools, and people's frustration with government, the need to get good government that they can rely on, that's focused on the things that matter to them and that they can count on."

He says he sees a proven track record and a strong plan with the NDP.

"I went with the Alberta NDP because it's got a proven track record of competent leadership during the 2015-2019 period. We had good government in spite of a lot of challenges facing the economy and the government at the time. It attracts good people; it's focused on things that matter to people as opposed to strange political experiments involving sovereignty and such. It serves everybody, it includes everybody. It was a very easy fit... It delivers the kind of good government that I remember from my earlier days and would love to see Alberta have again."

Aspects of the party's platform Van Tighem include is their Family Health Teams plan, their plan for affordable housing, and their commitment to restoring utility caps.

After an eventful four years following the last provincial election which saw a change in provincial leadership and a pandemic with countless economic and political consequences, Van Tighem expects a lot of voters will be taking a step back and considering their vote perhaps more than ever before.

"There's been this political shift on the right, the UCP is not the old conservatives and frankly, the Alberta NDP in 2023 is not the old Alberta NDP. I think when a lot of people sit down and look at where they are on the political spectrum, where the parties are, they're discovering to their surprise that they're more aligned with the NDP now. Not all of them have made that jump but a lot of them have and many are still struggling with what to do. For a lot of our rural conservatives, voting is important, being an active participant in democracy is important, but you don't vote for people you don't trust."

"I really think this is a bellwether election for Alberta. This is where we choose our future. Not to belabour a slogan, but that's why our focus is on a better future. That's what we're planning to deliver and we planning to deliver it by listening to people and seeing what that looks like through their eyes and then organizing ourselves to make it happen."

This is one in a series of pre-election candidate profiles on candidates in the riding.