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School board chair Dorais gives his side of the story

On Friday, news broke that Chris Dorais, North Vancouver school board chair, has been charged with driving under the influence. On Saturday, Dorais released a public statement:

For over 14 years, it has been my privilege to serve North Vancouver through numerous civic boards and committees, including my current term of service as chairperson of the North Vancouver Board of Education.

With privilege comes great responsibility though, and I acknowledge the importance of providing a public statement regarding a serious, personal situation in my life that occurred earlier this year.

On the morning of March 8, 2008, the vehicle I was driving was stopped by the RCMP for exceeding the speed limit. I agreed to, and provided, a breathalyzer test, and was subsequently charged with driving under the influence.

I am currently contesting the charge.

This is a difficult situation for myself and my family, and I am grateful for the support I have received from them. Although I had hoped to resolve this matter privately, and I am confident in the grounds for my decision to contest the charge, I realize that my responsibility to the public is not only professional, it is also personal.

I regret the decision I made not to address this matter publicly, and with my colleagues, sooner. For that, I sincerely apologize.

I genuinely believe that any role of public service requires the highest standard of professionalism. However, as this is a legal matter, I am limited with regards to what I can say at this time. What I can say, and is important for you to know, is that I have always conducted my public duties and responsibilities with uncompromised professionalism.

My commitment to the students and citizens of the North Shore remains constant and I will endeavour to continue, with the support of the electorate, to be of service to my community.

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