Veteran north-coast Greens campaigner Dawn Walker has set her sights on replacing Greens MLC Jan Barham, after the former Byron Shire mayor announced that she was retiring from state politics.
Ms Walker, has run twice for the federal seat of Richmond, held by Labor’s Justine Elliot, in 2013 and again this year but has yet to hold political office.
In announcing her candidacy on her Facebook page she said it was important that the north coast continued to be represented in parliament.
Under NSW law, if a casual vacancy is created by the death or resignation of an MLC it is up to the party to nominate a replacement.
But Greens protocols require a rank and file preselection ballot.
As a result, Ms Walker will face competition from Sydney-based Greens member Kelly Marks for the position.
The protocols also prevent candidates from canvassing for their election in the media but Ms Walker has released a video aimed at members on her Facebook page.
‘The Greens scored big swings in the seat of Richmond where I was the candidate for the last two federal elections,’ she said in the video.
‘I have extensive media experience and have been successful in getting issues out into the community and on the political agenda,’ she added.
‘Whether it’s working with women in my community to save the Murwillumbah Birthing Centre, stopping coal seam gas at the Bentley Blockade, exposing pollution and saving wetlands from an airport expansion or fighting for social justice and a fair go for single parents, I’ve worked with our Green MPs to win campaigns and achieve positive outcomes.’
In the video Ms Walker also throws her weight behind the move to create a Great Koala National Park on the north coast.
Wrapping up her pitch she says, ‘I’ve got the life experience, campaigning skills and the temperament to be a successful Greens MP that unites our party. I hope I can count on your support.’