Here’s a little bit about me and why I chose to become an Independent Candidate for Liverpool City Council in the 2008 council elections and what I’ve been up to since.
I was born in Sydney in 1955, and moved to what was then, Hillview housing estate the year I started school, being one of the first 20 students enrolled in Lurnea Public School.
I completed my schooling at Lurnea High School, and started working as a receptionist for a local company. In 1974 I married Lance Westerberg. Lance also grew up in Liverpool, and we moved into our first home in Sadleir that same year.
In 1979 my first daughter Inga was born, followed by my second, Alisha in 1980.
I held several different positions while my girls were young, my husband and I working to improve our home and give our girls the best opportunities in life. Part-time work enabled me to do that, and also gain experience in various fields and industries.
Both girls attended Sadleir Public School and I was an extremely active Mum, working in the classrooms, volunteering my time and soon after Inga’s enrolment there, I became involved with Sadleir’s Parents and Friends Association. While my children attended Sadleir PS I would hold various positions with that group, including President. I worked in the canteen and helped with various school activities throughout those years. I got to know my neighbours, and local families, some of whom, like myself, have the next generation attending our little local school.
My work has always been directed by my commitment to my family and my love of my community. I have worked in roles that were flexible allowing me to be at home with my children, as well as those who satisfy my desire to contribute to the growth of Liverpool and surrounding areas. At different times I worked in a part-time role for the Labor Member for Macquarie Fields, The Department of Education as a Community Liaison Officer and continued to build my own business as an Independent Mary Kay Sales Director.
I enrolled both my children in the then young and growing William Carey Christian School, and as they were growing up, I expanded my business and participated more regularly in Community groups and activities.
In 2001 my grandson Phillip was born. Then towards the end of 2002 I gathered together my business skills, experience in sales and service roles and opened Liverpool Serviced Offices, which I am sad to say closed in June this year after 11 successful years as the premier service provider in Liverpool.
I have participated in a TAFE NSW Mentoring for Young People Program. I’ve also been a regular attendee at the Liverpool City Council community workshops for Pioneer Memorial Park Preservation, Business and Tourism workshops and the monthly Liverpool Community Forums.
2008 was the first Local Council election to be held since the area entered Administration. I’ve lived my life in Liverpool, raised my family, and chosen to open and run my business here. As a child my daughter would laugh that a 5 minute run down to the local shops to get bread and milk would always end as a 30 minute trip, bumping into and chatting to the people in my area, my community, that I’ve come to know over the many years I’ve lived here. Liverpool has afforded me the opportunity to see the potential for success in my life come to fruition. 2008 is time to see that same potential I’ve always seen in Liverpool come to fruition also.
I threw my hat in the ring because I believe in Liverpool, its diversity, the value of its citizens and its potential as a centre for culture and business in Sydney’s vast and sprawling metropolitan area. As a place to live and raise our families in comfort and safety. I know the issues faced by people living and working in Liverpool, and have lived here in periods of vast change and challenge for people raising families and working and building their own businesses. Running as an Independent I believed would better enable me to communicate with my community and put forward with passion what that community wants and needs without the burden of ‘party politics’. Whilst not elected at the time my interest and commitment has not waned and I will continue to pursue what I believe will be in the best interests of our community.
Towards the end of 2008 I felt the best possible way to achieve what I believed was necessary for Liverpool to move forward was a group, this lead me to the NSW Greens. I did extensive research on their platforms, their charter and their politics and realised that in nearly every case they worked for the same things I worked for and they could provide the infrastructure I couldn’t as an independent to make things happen. They are an all encompassing, equality minded group who encourage people from all walks of life to participate. Having to set aside my “independent tag” was not easy but in service to our community you need to realise that working together (whilst not having to give away your independence and personal passions) will bring forth the best outcome for all in our community. (If you’d like to know more about my decisions pls read the article”it’s not easy being Green-scroll back using the calendar to Jan 09).
In my lifetime Liverpool has had a negative reputation, and its share of bad press. Now is not the time to step back, to lose interest or hope, it’s time to participate, watch and to share my love of Liverpool and help it grow into the future, leaving the bad press and reputation behind.
I have had the pleasure of representing the Greens in a number of elections for Local, State and Federal politics. I am and have been an active on a number of council committees and proudly represent the community as part of the Georges River Combined councils committee, the upper Georges River Urban sustainability project and our local council Environment advisory Committee. I have also been a member of the Liverpool CBD committee, the Sports & Recreation Panel and am a Justice of the Peace. I am proud of my involvement in the community and am passionate that we in the south west are provided the services we need, the representation we deserve and the future that is fair for all. Learn more about my continued involvement by reading the posts in this blog or call me directly.