Bridging the rural-urban divide was the motivation for Brian Doughty to put his hand up for election to the Whanganui District Council.

It's the first time Mr Doughty has challenged for public office but he's certainly no stranger to mixing it with the powers-that-be.

A farmer at Brunswick, he has been prominent in rural-based organisation, more recently spending 10 years as provincial president of Wanganui Federated Farmers.

He has also spent many years involved with organisations such as the National Parks and Reserves Board, been a trustee for local charitable trusts, and took a lead role as recovery facilitator in the wake of the devastating 2004 floods.

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"Those roles have built and expanded my understanding of council functions and governance roles," Mr Doughty said.

He has lived most of his life in Whanganui and moved to a farm at Brunswick where he and his wife Rae milk cows, goats and make goat cheese.

"My interest in council business and the community started with my role with Federated Farmers. The last few years have tested our rural infrastructure, what with the flooding of 2004, and with both city and rural communities again affected in June last year.

"Those events showed the terrific cooperation between urban and rural communities who worked together to restore essential infrastructure.

"It's this cooperation I believe I can bring to the council table to ensure all sections of the community are heard," Mr Doughty said.