Walsall-born Sue Arnold, left, has been chosen as the Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for Walsall South for the general election on May 7 next year.
The 54-year-old media magnate was selected from a shortlist of three by the local Tory association to fight the seat, currently held with a 1,700-majorty by Labour’s Valerie Vaz.
The new parliamentary hopeful was part of a team which launched the free weekly Walsall Advertiser in 1981 and quickly rose from sales executive to company director by the time she was 23.
Said Sue: “I’m thrilled and delighted to be challenging for the Walsall South parliamentary seat in the town where I was born and grew up.
“I’m here as the local girl to be a local champion – to stand up for the local communities.”
The prospective Tory candidate is already active in the political arena as Staffordshire’s deputy police and crime commissioner and a Lichfield district councillor.
She added: “I’m a hardworking, passionate person dealing very closely with individuals and businesses which have helped me understand the important issues affecting ordinary people.”
After launching the advertiser, Sue went on to become chief executive of its parent company, Tamworth-based Central Independent Newspapers.
CIN, then part of the Kent-based Adscene-owned group, was eventually sold to Northcliffe Newspapers and is now part of Local World.
In 1999 she fulfilled her own media business dreams when she launched three free Sunday newspapers in Sutton Coldfield, Tamworth and Stoke on the back of the company Mill House Media whose first chairman was former Aston Villa owner Doug Ellis.
For the last 14 years she has successfully run her own press, PR and advertising consultancy, Haselour House Media.
More recently as the county’s deputy crime boss she has spearheaded the launch of Staffordshire Young Police Cadets Service, the Business Crime Matters campaign and the vital initiative to put an end to female genital mutilation, which has gained national attention.
Walsall South constituency chairman Peter Washbrook said: “We’re so lucky to have Sue on board – a candidate with impeccable local credentials and a campaigning zeal to work for the good of the electorate of Walsall South.
“I personally can’t wait to see her on the election trail and begin the job of returning a much-needed Conservative MP for the people of this constituency.”