Eppalock Ward council hopeful Brett Mitchell said Bendigo needs strong, professional leadership as it recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
The first-time independent candidate plies his trade as a psychologist, but has an extensive background working among community and not-for-profit organisations.
"I'm at a stage in my life where I have the maturity and life experience to add value to the community," Mr Mitchell said.
"The last six months have been difficult for businesses and communities in Bendigo and as we recover from these challenging times, we all want to be connected and caring communities."
Job creation and the development of community and sporting hubs are priorities for Mr Mitchell.
"The management of rates, boosting tourism and improving rural and regional transport options are other areas I am passionate about improving," he said.
Growing up in Strathdale and with family scattered across the ward, Mr Mitchell said he understands what matters most to his community.
"The Eppalock Ward has a number of communities and towns with their own unique identity," he said.
"It is important that we are listening to those communities and know what their aspirations are, whether that be in Heathcote, Axedale, Kennington or elsewhere."
Mr Mitchell said the ward needs a proactive councillor who is ready to listen to and serve the community.
"The community needs someone who is going to get out there, be available and be someone they can trust to collaborate with community leaders and influential people to help drive projects," Mr Mitchell said.
Mr Mitchell is joined as an Eppalock Ward candidate by Gregory Arthur, David Hewitt, Robin Chapman, Lewis Freeman-Harrison, Gregory Penna, Helen Leach and Matthew Evans.
Incumbent councillors Susie Hawke, George Flack and Mayor Margaret O'Rourke are also standing for re-election.
The council election is by postal vote only, with ballot packs containing voting material mailed to enrolled voters from October 6 to be returned by October 23.