Mike Grail. (Photo from MikeGrail.com)

Grail Sets Sights On Parliament Hill

Local Tim Hortons franchisee Mike Grail is looking to follow up on local coffee shop concerns with federal politicians in Ottawa.

Grail, who owns a half-dozen Tim Hortons franchises in southwestern Ontario, is running for the Conservative Party of Canada nomination for the Chatham-Kent-Leamington riding, which will be up for grabs in the fall with current MP Dave Van Kesteren set to retire before the next federal election.

“I learned early on, that business and politics are very similar in they require both leadership and vision, and 100% commitment — but you can only do one at a time,” says Grail. “After 25 years in business, I feel that with Dave [Van Kesteren] retiring, it’s the right time for me to move into this type of role.”

Along with his experience as a long-time Tim Hortons franchisee, Grail is also the current board chair at the Children’s Treatment Centre of Chatham-Kent.

He says all of that experience has taught him some valuable lessons he can apply to federal politics.

“I’ve sat on national boards, so I see things from a macro perspective,” says Grail. “I also have what I believe is a unique ability to be able to bring it down into a useable microform.”

Grail says he has also been hearing from local residents at his restaurants for years, and he’s ready to take some of those concerns to Parliament Hill.

“Many of [our customers] are very politically savvy and I listen to their concerns,” says Grail. “They’re things that we as people of this community should be concerned about and we really need to put the best person forward to be able to have that strong voice at the table when decisions are made in Ottawa.”

Grail says the CKL Conservative Riding Association’s nomination meeting is taking place in November.

You can find out more about Grail and the nomination process by clicking here.