MICHAEL Southwell is contesting for Bunbury mayor in the upcoming local government elections on October 16.
As current president of the Shire of Capel, Mr Southwell will run for Bunbury mayor after retiring from eight years as a councilor in the Shires of Bridgetown and Capel, with two of those years recently spent as president of Capel.
After living in the South West region for the past 20 years, Mr Southwell currently resides in Gelorup, which he said he considers a part of Bunbury.
He said he had nominated for mayor of Bunbury because 'for a long time' he had watched the city 'fail' to reach its potential.
"The city of Bunbury seems to have drifted in recent years," Mr Southwell said.
"I can see what needs to be done and have the experience to know how it can be done."
Mr Southwell is a former journalist and now works professionally as a business owner and a public relations consultant.
He is married to his wife Virginia and has two, teenage children at Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School.
Mr Southwell told the Mail that if elected he would push for the Shire of Capel boundary to be re-drawn accordingly, so that Gelorup and Dalyellup residents would be included in the city.
"It occured to me that the people of Gelorup and Dalyellup should not be sending millions in rates down the road to Capel, when they invariably use Bunbury for their shopping, sport and leisure," Mr Southwell said.
"Bunbury badly needs an identity, a clear direction and a vision which its citizens can believe in, support and rally behind. I would match a brand for Bunbury with a strategy of maximising access to our magnificent beaches, inlet and safe harbour."
On a day off, Mr Southwell can be found golfing or tending to his vegetable garden.