Introducing Rocky’s youngest mayoral candidate
WITHOUT a grey hair in sight, youthful mayoral challenger Christopher Davies hopes voters will look beyond his age to appreciate his big ideas for the Rockhampton region.
Of the crowded field of candidates vying for the role of the region's mayor at the January 23 by-election, including councillors Tony Williams and Donna Kirkland, Dominic Doblo, Nyree Johnson, Chris "Pineapple" Hooper and Christian Shepherd - Mr Davies was the youngest.
"I'm 32-years-old and that is either for me or against me," Mr Davies said.
"I hear that my youth is seen as inexperience from members but I'm here to say that I'm young but I've also got on-the-ground experience with the community and I can bring fresh ideas.
"I'm not influenced by the current political atmosphere, I would head into it with my eyes open and not be influenced by other decisions that happened in the past."
Mr Davies believed his youthful viewpoint could offer a different perspective to Rockhampton Regional Council's entrenched approach with its long-term councillors.
A local business owner who has lived in CQ for 17 years, including eight years in Rockhampton, Mr Davies has worked in a number of roles affording him the opportunity to directly engage with the community.
His community connection started when he first moved to Rockhampton to work as a cameraman for Channel 7.
He's since moved on, starting his own business three years ago which was focused on marketing, media, corporate videos and freelancing for media companies.
"At the moment, because of COVID, I lost a lot of my business because normally I film football and QRL games, which got cancelled this year," Mr Davies said.
"I started earlier on this year live-filming funerals because a lot of people were yelling out saying we need funerals to be live-streamed because we could only have 10 people (in attendance) when COVID hit.
"I'm now working full-time for Fitzroy Funerals as a multimedia manager, livestreaming funerals and doing their media and marketing."
Working in the media industry has allowed him to meet people from all walks of life and understand what they regarded as important.
"Being in the role that I have been in the past, you hear direct from the community and you see the issues that are around and certain things that can be better," Mr Davies said.
"It never had crossed my mind that I could be a candidate for the role of mayor but over the last couple of weeks we have seen the likes of Chris Hooper wake up in the morning and he's mayor.
"That's shown, as long as you've got a passion and you only want to do the right thing for the region, why can't any member of the community put their hand up and want be a candidate for the role of mayor?"
Mr Davies said he had enough experience, passion, and "his head in the game", making him more than capable of fulfilling the role of mayor.
While he wasn't planning on rolling out his policy platform until the New Year, Mr Davies was able to share some of his priorities, which included reducing crime, supporting the city's youth with more entertainment options and a youth council to give them greater say, as well as attracting industry to the city.
Right at the top of his list was a plan to revitalise the CBD - particularly in the East St precinct - which he said was becoming a "ghost town".
He said the precinct needed be changed to allow for future development, attract more businesses to the area, with several buildings desperately in need of a makeover.
With potential customers struggling to find car parks before giving up to shop elsewhere, Mr Davies said he wanted to fix the problem and restore pride to the historic street.