Candidate profile: Jeremy Challacombe
I HAVE a Hawkesbury Diploma of Agriculture and a Bachelor of Natural Resources from the University of New England.
I have worked in agriculture, natural resource management, tourism and community development for 35 years in Australia and overseas.
Since returning to Grafton, I have been involved in the community as a member of the Total Catchment Management group, a board member of the Susan Island Trust, president of the Grafton Chamber of Commerce, board member of Clarence River Tourism and Northern Rivers Tour- ism. I am vice-president of the Grafton Show Society.
I have been involved in council committees including the Rates Review Committee and the Traffic Advisory Committee.
I am heavily involved in the farmers' market movement, chairing the Grafton Farmers Market, and establishing the Yamba Farmers' Market.
My wife Sue and I run a farm in South Grafton, growing strawberries, pecans and a small herd of cattle and alpacas.
I stand for a "can do" Council, with an emphasis on encouraging and assisting sustainable development throughout the Clarence Valley.
If elected, my "open door" platform will encourage ratepayers to contact me with any issues of concern.
I would like to see the community/council interface to be strengthened and actively encouraged by a greater use of local expertise in providing advice to council in appropriate areas.
There is a need for increased tertiary education in the Clarence Valley and I will be doing all I can to ensure this need is met.
The development of a "Clarence Valley" brand is a priority, along with greater diversification in the agricultural sector with the aim of developing value-adding.
I would actively encourage a thorough review of where we want to be in the next 50 fifty years, and developing a community-based plan to move forward in such a direction.