A BENDIGO council candidate wants the city to be able to host more national and international sporting events.
Nathan Rogers is also seeking to work with the community to revitalise Bendigo's Hargreaves Mall and "bring it back to a thriving hub of activity".
Mr Rogers is standing for election in the Lockwood Ward.
This is his first campaign for Bendigo council.
The Kangaroo Flat resident is the founder and chief executive officer of The Bushfire Foundation Inc, which assists with fire preparedness and bushfire recovery.
Mr Rogers volunteered with the CFA for 16 years, from 2000.
He was involved in fighting the Black Saturday fires in Bendigo, as well as fires in the Grampians in 2006.
Developing a more community-focussed approach to emergency preparedness, response and recovery is among his election issues.
Other priorities include COVID-19 recovery and offering further support for community groups.
Mr Rogers has been involved in local sports such as football and cricket.
People might recognise him from his work as a goal umpire in both state and local-level football from 2008 - 2010.
Mr Rogers was among the Bendigo participants in the Queen's Baton Relay ahead of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
"My personal values are respect, integrity, compassion and empathy, combined with the ability to listen to people, which I believe is what the people of Bendigo need right now," he said.
The 35-year-old father of three is involved in the LEAD Loddon Murray Community Leadership Program.
He felt he had something to the give back to the community by running for council.
"I just think with all the experiences I've had through fire brigade in terms of things I've seen and having to deal with different situations on a number of occasions, just feel that I can connect with people on a different level to maybe previous councillors gone by," Mr Rogers said.
"That's not to say they don't connect with their communities, I just think I've got the ability to connect with them and be able to understand them."
Other candidates in the Lockwood Ward include Vyonne McLelland-Howe.
Matt Evans is standing for election in Eppalock Ward.
Council elections are on October 24 and will be conducted by postal vote.
The Victorian Electoral Commission has urged the city's residents to enrol to vote.
Have you signed up to the Bendigo Advertiser's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in central Victoria.