Former Lewiston resident and current Adelaide Plains Council councillor, Karen McColl (pictured) could go head-to-head with Member of Parliament Tony Piccolo at the next state election after nominating for the seat of Light last week.
Ms McColl, who now lives in Evanston Gardens, will seek Liberal Party pre-selection for Light in the lead up to the 2018 State election and hopes to win by majority votes of members in the coming weeks. With a 20-year career in human resources and a diploma in counselling behind her, working with disadvantaged and at risk youth as well as assisting the community are issues close to Ms McColl’s heart.
“My passion is working with the community and assisting those in need, particularly disadvantaged and at risk youth,” she said.
Ms McColl has coordinated several community engagement programs, such as the Father’s Farm at-risk youth program for the northern region, and cites this kind of work as the source of her passion – as well as her two school-aged sons.
More than 18 months ago, when the council was seemingly churning through CEOs, morale was low and the then mayor, Duncan Kennington, took sick leave, Ms McColl was forced to step up.
“I was approached by some members of the Liberal Party, both retired and some still active in parliament,” she said.
“They saw the way that I conducted myself during that quite difficult time that we went through in council and suggested I nominate.”
Ms McColl said the challenge of juggling two young children, her commitments to council as well as possibly state-level politics was not lost on her, and the decision to nominate was not taken lightly.
“It’s been a huge a decision,” she said.
“They say it takes a village to raise a child (and) I’ve got really supportive family and friends, and I’ve had to engage that network.
“The timing is right, having the boys at school.
“I’m excited but I’m also nervous and there will be many challenges along the way.”
If Ms McColl is successful, she will take on current Member for Light, Labor’s Tony Piccolo.
Ms McColl and Stephen Balch are preselection candidates for Light, while Adam Moss, Fraser Ellis and Amanda Wheeler have nominated for Narungga. Both preselections are expected to be held April 22.