WITH an Order of Australia medal under his belt, his name on the Victorian State Secondary Schools Honour Role, and a Life Membership of the Mt St Gwinear Ski Patrol, Inverloch resident and established citizen of the community Max Wells is throwing his hat into the ring for the upcoming local government elections.
Now retired, Mr Wells, has spent his life working as a secondary school teacher and, in later years, as executive adviser at Surfing Australia.
Growing more disappointed in the current council, Mr Wells has decided to put his money where his mouth is, and step up to represent his community in the October elections.
“I didn’t really set out to look at this role when I retired, but I am really disappointed in what is happening in our community, and I believe I have both the skills and passion to hopefully better engage, consult, and speak on behalf of our community as a whole than is currently being achieved,” Mr Wells said.
In his application for the candidacy role of councillor for the Bunurong Ward, Mr Wells said that it is his love of the local area that drives him.
“The Bass Coast region is a fantastic place to live, work, raise a family and to visit,” he writes.
“I moved to the area in the early 1980s, met my wife (who was born in Wonthaggi) and we have raised our two children living in Inverloch and sending them firstly to Inverloch Primary and then Wonthaggi Secondary College.
“I recently (in February 2016) retired and within my working life I basically had two careers, firstly as a teacher, most of my time at Wonthaggi Tech/Secondary College and then for the last 17 years at Surfing Victoria for 15 of which I was CEO.
“Responsibilities within the CEO role included managing multi-million dollar budgets, running one of Victoria’s hallmark sporting events – the Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach, liaising with all levels of government (local, state and federal), and working with local communities across the state.”
In 2014 Mr Wells was awarded an Order of Australia Medal for his services to surfing and the greater community.
Through his diverse involvement in the community over the past 30 years, Mr Wells believes he has proven skills in leadership, community and team building, organisational financial accountability, experience working with local government, and experience with consulting stakeholders.
“We live in a special part of the world. It is disappointing for me as a long term resident that our council has the lowest community satisfaction rating of all councils in our state,” Mr Wells said.
“We can do better. If elected I will do my best to take a more balanced, community consultative approach to decision making.”