FRESH enthusiasm and experience make up the Fianna Fáil ticket for the Tullow electoral area for year’s local elections in May. Last Thursday night at the party’s Tullow convention, long-standing councillor John Pender was once again selected to run, alongside new candidate John McDonald from Graiguenalug, Nurney.
Mr McDonald is heavily involved in the GAA. A former chairperson and secretary of his home club The Fighting Cocks, he is the current assistant secretary of Carlow County Board.
Mr McDonald’s sons are keen members of Tullow Rugby Club. Jack plays for the senior team, while Des is a member of the U17 side and was part of last year’s all-Ireland winning Tullow U16 team. John’s daughter Kate is a valued member of Hanover Harps ladies’ team.
The McDonald family have also been actively involved in their local community over the years and John sees this first step into politics as a further opportunity to give back locally. “I’m looking forward to the challenge and working with an experienced campaigner like cllr John Pender,” said Mr McDonald.
“I want to thank my supporters and the Fianna Fáil cumann for selecting me last Thursday night. I’ve a lot of work to do, but I’m looking forward to it,” he added.
The Tullow convention was chaired by senator Gerry Horkan and also attended by Marguerite O’Loughlin from Fianna Fáil national headquarters.
Three candidates had initially been proposed and seconded for the convention, cllr Pender, Mr McDonald and Thomas Keogh from Liscolman, Tullow. However, on the night, Mr Keogh withdrew from the contest, with the two remaining candidates automatically selected without a vote.
Cllr Pender is Carlow County Council’s longest-serving councillor. “I hope the Tullow electorate renew their confidence in me this May and I can continue my role as a dedicated councillor for the area,” he said.