WITH mo­men­tum to­wards the shire elec­tions build­ing, be­low we in­tro­duce pro­files of two more would-be can­di­dates. Just a re­minder - the nom­i­na­tions for can­di­dates open this Satur­day and close at noon on Thurs­day, Oc­to­ber 17. Polling day is Satur­day, Novemb

Richard Laven­der Oak Beach Bruce Clarke Cooya Beach

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

I’m a 14-year Oak Beach res­i­dent and ratepayer, and the owner/di­rec­tor of a suc­cess­ful in­ter­net mar­ket­ing com­pany pro­mot­ing lo­cal and Aus­tralian tourism to a world­wide au­di­ence. For 15 years I was a ‘hands on’ chief ex­ec­u­tive of a suc­cess­ful soft­ware com­pany, m a n a g i n g 150 s k i l l e d em­ploy­ees and a $15 mil­lion an­nual bud­get. I also es­tab­lished an IT Ad­vo­cacy group out­side of the Sil­i­con Val­ley CA. I en­ter this race with a strong fi­nan­cial and busi­ness back­ground of es­tab­lish­ing and run­ning t wo sep­a­rate and suc­cess­ful busi­nesses over the past 29 years. I have the back­ground and ex­pe­ri­ence to be able to con­trib­ute to the suc­cess of the new Dou­glas Shire. To help it re­turn to a solid fi­nan­cial foot­ing and steer us into an ex­cit­ing and re­ward­ing fu­ture for all of us. Our new Coun­cil re­ally needs new blood with fresh ideas, coun­cil­lors that are in­de­pen­dent of lo­cal po­lit­i­cal groups and yet in­clu­sive, who can lis­ten well, an­a­lyse things deeply, and know how to get things done. It’s time for progress and mov­ing for­ward, but in the right di­rec­tion! I can make a dif­fer­ence and that’s why I am putting my hand up. for the new Dou­glas Shire Coun­cil. A bal­anced bud­get, main­tain qual­ity ser­vices, sus­tain and en­hance tourism and agri­cul­ture, achieve chem­i­cal free wa­ter, main­tain the plan­ning scheme, ex­pand the Daintree Gate­way, en­gage our In­dige­nous lead­ers, come up with more win-win sit­u­a­tions that cre­ate em­ploy­ment, find new ways to bet­ter use the in­ter­net in our demo­cratic pro­cesses, en­cour­age com­pa­nies to work to­gether, and within Coun­cil, to cre­ate syn­er­gies to be­come more ef­fi­cient and save money. In other words, to get more bang for our bucks! I see our re­gion as one of the last bas­tions of san­ity in a hec­tic and some­times crazy world. A pris­tine sanc­tu­ary of peace and beauty we cher­ish and pro­tect, a great place to live to­gether in har­mony, a thriv­ing lo­cal econ­omy where we truly co­op­er­ate with each for our mu­tual suc­cess, a fan­tas­tic and wel­com­ing desti­na­tion for tourists to come and re­lax and take in the many won­ders and joys of our lit­tle piece of par­adise. Born in Cairns. Grand­fa­ther born in Port Dou­glas in 1887. Great grand­fa­ther was the first Har­bour Mas­ter in Port Dou­glas in the 1870’s. I stud­ied Civil Engineering at Cairns Tech­ni­cal Col­lege whilst work­ing for a Cairns Con­sult­ing Engineering Com­pany on roads and bridges in North Queens­land. Moved to Syd­ney to work for a Con­sult­ing Engineering Com­pany , spent 2 years in western NSW on the de­sign of a wa­ter stor­age dam. Moved to Bris­bane for the Build­ing De­sign of the Port of Bris­bane at Fish­er­mans Is­land. Came to Port Dou­glas in 1980 as a Build­ing De­signer and have had my busi­ness here ever since, the past 12 years at Cooya Beach. My lat­est project be­ing the de­sign and con­struc­tion su­per­vi­sion of the Bowl­ing Green Roof and Ex­ten­sions to the Moss­man Bowls Club. I have spent 8 years col­lec­tively as Pres­i­dent of El­lis Beach and Port Dou­glas Surf Life­sav­ing Clubs. My his­tory and pas­sion for Dou­glas Shire is very ob­vi­ous, and I would like the op­por­tu­nity to take Dou­glas Shire into a fi­nan­cially sta­ble po­si­tion, and bring it back to be­ing one of the top 4 Tourist des­ti­na­tions in the world. We have two ma­jor in­dus­tries in Dou­glas Shire. The Su­gar In­dus­try, and the Tourist In­dus­try. Both must be main­tained and pro­moted. Small busi­ness is a very big part of th­ese 2 in­dus­tries, and Es­tab­lish­ment of an aged care fa­cil­ity in Moss­man is of ut­most im­por­tance. The es­tab­lish­ment of a Botan­i­cal Gar­dens in Dou­glas is one of my pri­or­i­ties. Main­te­nance of roads in the Shire must be recog­nised as a very im­por­tant pri­or­ity, as does the con­tin­u­a­tion and up­grade of on­go­ing ser­vices. The Port Dou­glas La­goon is a pri­or­ity that will have to wait un­til the new Coun­cil be­comes fi­nan­cially sta­ble enough to sup­port the con­struc­tion and main­te­nance of such an ex­pen­sive project. Port Dou­glas is the step­ping stone for the reef and rain for­est adventures that can be en­joyed by tourists and lo­cals alike. If we could all be­come am­bas­sador’s for Port Dou­glas, Moss­man, Daintree, and the des­ti­na­tions across the river, we will be­come the ma­jor tourist desti­na­tion of Aus­tralia. We all have to work at this.

must be pro­moted in con­junc­tion with the ma­jor in­dus­tries. What are your pri­or­i­ties?

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