| 13-Jul-2021 |
While many Victorians may not have heard of towns like Donald, Ouyen and Cohuna, they and several other regional localities are the centre of a new campaign to recruit Senior Election Officials for Victorian State and local council elections.
The Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC) is recruiting up to 100 would‑be leaders from all walks of life to train as Election Managers and Assistant Election Managers during major election events.
Janine Taylor, a beef farmer, business owner, mum and Senior Election Official, features in a video promoting the campaign, reflecting on how her experience managing a farm paralleled the work of running an election.
‘Farming usually can’t wait – managing cows, managing the grass to feed the cows, there’s lots of elements involved,’ Ms Taylor said.
After some encouragement from her local Senior Election Official, Ms Taylor was persuaded to apply to join the ranks.
‘When I started in an election office [as a casual election worker] you’re sitting there going ‘Look at what they’re doing, running here, there and everywhere, managing this, managing that…’
‘I was really encouraged to give it a go, because they thought I could do it – and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done.’
Not to be confused with Voting Centre Managers, Senior Election Officials are responsible for coordinating elections for entire districts or councils, working for months at a time during election periods.
With the State election set to take place in November 2022, the recruitment campaign is targeting both outer Melbourne metropolitan areas as well as Northern and Western Victorian regions.
Electoral Commissioner Warwick Gately said that while managing elections could be challenging and unpredictable, it was also a rewarding experience, with many current Senior Election Officials sticking with the job for over 20 years.
‘If you’re a business owner, if you’re retired or semi-retired, if you’re a parent, if you’re an artist, or a coach of the local footy club – we want to hear from you,’ Mr Gately said.
‘You don’t need previous election experience. It’s all about the skills and life experience you can bring to the role – if you’re organised, hands‑on, and most importantly bring a positive attitude, that’s what we’re looking for.’
Applications are open until Friday 16 July 2021, at careers.vic.gov.au/job/senior-election-officials-542154