During his time in Foggy Bottom, Joel Davidson, MBA ‘11, knew he had to be different than many of the “top down” politicians in Washington. Hailing from England, Joel became interested in DC politics during his time at GW. He began to focus on the politics within the boundaries of the District, which was rather unusual for a school where so many students will proudly announce, “I’m the next President of the United States.” While Joel was immediately excluded from this realm of possibility due to his British citizenship, he focused on community-level politics, doing what he could to stay up to date with what happened on the DC City Council.
At an event during his time at GW, Joel met former DC Mayor Adrian Fenty, and the two began discussing issues that plagued the neighborhood where Joel was living.To his delight, Mayor Fenty lent an ear to Joel, and was interested in Joel’s fascination with community politics. This style of politician seems hard to come by these days!
Joel raves about the networking skills he learned while earning his MBA at GW. He uses them in every aspect of his job, and his ability to connect with people has helped him find success. Joel was recently elected as a London City Councilor, representing Brondesbury Park ward in the Brent borough of London. He represents citizens and fights for their rights, dealing with issues such as residents who are not treated well by public organizations, residents who live in social housing, especially the elderly, and lobbying for more transparent spending.
Citing his networking skills, Joel has become a talented civic representative, and can often be found connecting with the people he represents. He believes that politics should work from the ground up, with the people voicing their opinions and needs through those that represent them. For this reason, Joel will tell you that he spends his weekends “Meeting residents for cups of tea” and “Knocking on countless doors.” Joel has embraced his position and uses it to better the lives of those around him.
Although he faces an intimidating majority on the council that is stacked against him (he is one of just six Conservatives on the council facing 56 Labour Party representatives), Joel does an excellent job of representing the district from which he hails. He is certainly unafraid to challenge the City of London to help those whom he represents, and he does an excellent job of letting citizens know he is there for them.
While his position as councilor is part time, Joel finds that he spends all of his free time working to better the lives of the people who elected him. He is a dedicated public servant, and has taken his networking skills that he learned during his time in Foggy Bottom across the pond, and has put them to great use. You can find more information about Joel and his position on Twitter (@JoelBrondesbury), where he actively tweets about the issues he is currently working on.