Typically, councillors are the closest of all public representatives, and often throughout the Troubles the only consistent office bearers that citizens could count on for help from year to year. We looked for councillors with a capacity to reach out to new audiences, and who were prepared to engage positively with their local electorates. And the winner is…Winner: Deirdre Nelson
Deirdre was elected in 2005 and is chair of the Cultural Services Committee in Council which among other things is responsible for oversight of the new Braid Arts Centre, museum and Town Hall complex. She’s a teacher by background. She keeps a blog-like newsroll on the Councillor.info site.
Commended: Colin McGrath
Colin came with several recommendations, both from Slugger’s readers and political insiders in Stormont and is held in high regard by colleagues. His video diaries are one of the best examples of engagement to come out of the Councillor.info site, and a primary reason why he made councillor of the week on Slugger.
Commended: Domhnall Ó Cobhthaigh
Domhnall is young, personable and extremely bright. Co-opted onto the council, he has made good use of the opportunities not simply to represent the direct interests of his own constituents to take opportunities to engage in political discourse with oppontents. he’s one of Slugger’s tips as one to watch for the future.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty