Invercargill councillor Toni Biddle has confirmed she will stand against the city’s long-serving mayor, Tim Shadbolt, at next year's local body elections.
She is the first to publicly announce plans to run against Mr Shadbolt at the October election.
Cr Biddle told RadioLIVE the Mr Shadbolt has created “a significant brand for himself”, but it’s time to freshen things up.
“The saying has always been the same that [Mr Shadbolt] put us on the map. And I absolutely don’t deny that.
“[But] I think it’s time for a shift and someone to continue his legacy, and I’m the girl for that – I’m ready,” she said.
Cr Biddle says over the next five years, Invercargill will go through a significant transformation.
“I really believe that we need a mayor that’s on the ground and in the community.”
A former champion Southland swimmer and a singer, this is Cr Biddle’s first term on the council.
But her past work includes 11 years at the Ministry of Social Development.
More recently, she was appointed trust board chairwoman for the Southland Museum and Art Gallery.
The trust board this year decided to close the museum because of safety concerns over the Invercargill building.
Listen to the full interview with Toni Biddle above.
The Long Lunch with Lynda Hallinan, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.