James always looking for opportunities
James Sainsbury has a trifecta of passions in his life.
Family, career and community and it’s the passion for the latter that has him contesting the Matamata Ward for the MatamataPiako local government elections.
Sainsbury, a family man to three young children and Matamata Playcentre president, says he is always looking for opportunities to contribute and sees serving on council as a great platform to do just that.
‘‘I’m in the right place to run for council and if i’m the right fit, serve on council.’’
Sainsbury campaigned for councillor in the 2013 elections, with 1023 votes, coming in behind another 2016 councillor hopeful Kevin Tappin.
He says he wasn’t disappointed to not be successful in the last campaign, instead, seeing it as a great opportunity to learn.
‘‘It was no big deal, I was the primary caregiver with children all under two years. I knew there was a lot of competition with very good candidates, but I was glad to be part of that process.’’
It was only a few months ago that Sainsbury decided to campaign in the 2016 election. He feels he’s in a better position compared to three years ago.
‘‘My position is unique. My wife is working full time, i’m in part-time work. My kids are approaching school age and it’s a window for me to do something. The connections I have now are stronger than they were before.
‘‘All the stars have aligned for me to run.’’
Sainsbury says he doesn’t have an agenda instead he just wants to represent the community’s interests as best he can. He is hopeful if he is successful, to bring another voice to the council table.
‘‘A big part of a councillors role, if any issues are brought to them, is to make sure they are presented to the table, in the appropriate context.
‘‘Even if it’s something I didn’t agree with necessarily, it would be my role to make sure they are represented.
‘‘I want to be part of good decision making. We get better decisions if there is more diversity around the table.
‘‘My point of difference from the other candidates, all of whom are excellent, is that I have the perspective of having a young family and I am also a practicing scientist.
‘‘There is a way of thinking that can come with that and that perspective can also be useful when looking at issues.’’