Zone Three representative
My name is Josh Chandulal-Mackay, I am currently in my second term as a Whanganui District Councillor and in my first term as an elected member on the Whanganui District Health Board.
I was born and raised in Whanganui before studying a Bachelor of Arts in Politics, Psychology, and Philosophy at Massey University for three years. In 2016 I chose to discontinue studying a postgraduate diploma in Politics to run for the Whanganui District Council. I was elected at age 21 and at the time was the youngest councillor in the country.
My interest in local government stems from my five-year membership of the Whanganui Youth Committee from age 12 to 18. It also comes from a long-term respect for the principles of civic participation and engagement, as well as the recognition of community as being central to the well-being of people.
I enjoy participating in the governance of organisations that align with my aspirations for Whanganui. I am Deputy Chair of Age Concern Whanganui, Deputy Chair of Youth Services Trust Whanganui, a Trustee on the board of Hakeke St Community Centre and on the St Anne’s Catholic School Board of Trustees. I have been an independent marriage and civil union celebrant since 2017.
As a councillor my focus is on community engagement, responding to challenges like climate change and our housing shortage, partnering with Māori, place-making, and the creation of accessible community facilities. I believe in growing our diversity, celebrating multiculturalism and pushing back against racism. Over the last four years I’ve also focused on creating positive culture at Council where debates occur respectfully and where personal attacks and divisiveness are a thing of the past - this approach is fundamental to my ethos as an elected member.