Now you're a councillor

Now you're a councillor

A site for women councillors in Victorian local government

The counsel of other women …

Pam McLeod (Former Councillor City of Whittlesea) and Cr Emilia Sterjova, newly elected to City of Whittlesea

(If you think you would benefit from mentoring support contact ALGWA.)

Pam McLeod (Mentor)

I was a councillor with the City of Whittlesea for three terms, going out at the 2012 election and represented the North Ward.  I am still very passionate about local government and our community.  As a new councillor, I quickly became involved in ALGWA and found the counsel of other women invaluable.  This was a feeling of strength, knowing that no  matter the difficulty, advice and support were  available.

When Emilia told me she was keen to run for the ward I had represented, I was thrilled that such a wonderful young person with enthusiasm and talent wanted to be involved and was keen  to  have my support.  For Emilia to be elected was overwhelmingly exciting.  I watched Emilia being sworn in and have attended most council meetings.  This gives a chance to provide advice to Emilia in the best way I can.

As a mentor, it is very important to  allow Emilia  to find her way and provide guidance as she seeks it.

You never stop learning about so many things – relationships are hugely important and finding how to navigate the role and develop strengths is important. 

Knowing that our mentoring sessions are confidential allows Emilia to raise any subject for discussion with confidence.  I am glad  to be giving back and supporting Emilia.

ALGWA has had a long involvement with mentoring in the past.  During 2016, ALGWA invited expressions of interest from potential mentors/mentees and this program has been supported by the Victorian government.  The mentoring program goes to the core purpose of ALGWA and is enabling materials and an evidence base to be used for the future.

Cr Emilia Sterjova (Mentee)

I was elected as the youngest Councillor in the City of Whittlesea late 2016 and the current youngest Councillor in Victoria. Being a young and new Councillor, I was eager to gain as much support as possible. I was fortunate to have already known Pam Mcleod as she supported me during my campaign for local government.

When Pam started to mentor me through the ALGWA program, I felt incredibly lucky. I had someone to catch up with and ask the many questions I had relating to council. It was particularly helpful that Pam had been a previous Councillor at my council.

I felt that she was the best person to talk to as she truly understood what it was like to be in my shoes. 

Without the help of Pam, I would have been lost. Being a Councillor for the first time is quite overwhelming and there is plenty to learn. Pam helped me get organised and learn things that I was not taught by my directors. I cannot speak more highly of this program. I strongly encourage all new Councillors to get involved in this program.