Councillor Despi O’Connor was elected to the Mornington Peninsula Shire Council in 2020 and represents the Briars Ward. Cr O’Connor was elected as Mayor in 2020-21. She is an appointed representative on the Community Consultative Committee on Gaming, Metropolitan Transport Forum, Mornington Liquor Industry Accord, Mornington Peninsula Cemetery Trust and Northern Mornington Peninsula Local Area Action Plan Advisory Committee. She is an alternate representative on the Arts and Culture Advisory Panel, Disability Advisory Committee and Triple A Housing Committee.
Cr O’Connor has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Human Movement, a Master’s in Education (Research) and a Graduate Diploma in Education (Primary) achieving Dux of 2009. Her career has focused on the disciplines of education and recreation. She was an AUSTSWIM teacher, coach and trainer and has worked as Director of Aquatic Education with the YMCA and as a Community Recreation Officer at Baw Baw Shire. She is a teacher at Mount Martha Primary School.
She has been an active member of her local community for many years including being the Founder and President of Mount Martha Basketball Club, Patrol Member and Captain of Mount Martha Life Saving Club, Chief Instructor Mount Martha Life Saving Club and Assessor for the Bayside Life Saving Clubs. She is also an avid runner.
Cr O’Connor is passionate about a range of local issues including recognising our diverse population and ensuring equity for all of our residents on the Mornington Peninsula, and educating others about the traditional owners the Bunurong, their culture and resilience in the spirit of reconciliation.