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In this cross-post from Operation Black Vote, Ashlea Williams casts a spotlight on Sunny Dhadley, a participant on the West Midlands Civic Leadership Programme and new member of the Wolverhampton Policing and Crime Board


Here at OBV we are currently in the middle of yet another of our award-winning mentoring and shadowing scheme this one covering Birmingham and Wolverhampton with the West Midlands Civic Leadership Programme, funded by the Barrow Cadbury Trust. One particular go-getting member amidst an already elite group of 40 individuals is Sundeep Dhadley who has, it would seem, a finger in every pie and has managed to garner himself a position as the newest member and Third Sector representative of the new Policing and Crime Board in Wolverhampton.


Dhadley’s new role will mean he is directly involved in how the board set their policing priorities and he hopes to be able to address the deficit of BME viewpoints in this decision making arena. He was inspired to apply whilst sitting on another strategic board, which fed into him being recommended for this newly established one.


Sunny, as he prefers to be called, has been extremely active on the Civic Leadership Programme. He, along with other members of the programme, volunteered to help with Neena Gill’s campaign for re-election as an MEP to gain an insight into campaigning. He says he feels privileged to have been present as Gill herself explained a little about her political journey and how the role of MEP directly affects people’s lives often in ways they may not realise and how laws and legislation at the European level get handed down to Britain. He expressed a desire to eventually become an MEP and contribute to bringing long-term sustainable change to the UK and it appears to be a fully realisable dream as he shows no signs of stopping.


All this is in addition to being a full time member of OBV’s Civic Leadership Programme for the West Midlands to whom Sunny attributes his achievements for the opportunities it has afforded him. He is rubbing shoulders with MPs and Councillors and acknowledges that without OBV, it would’ve been difficult to gain such exposure and would not have been as simple to open doors to initial contact opportunities. Sunny is always asking insightful questions, a quality that has been noted by his mentors and peers alike and has brought him into the recognition of people of influence. He encourages all of us to follow his example and take the initiative. He said,

Do not be afraid to put your head above the parapet and do not worry if you don’t understand at first – ask until you do.“

The last thing Sunny insisted that I do was to thank OBV for the opportunity invested in him and that he remains eager and is looking forward to continuing to soak up all knowledge as he embarks on his Councillor shadowing of the leader of the Council in Wolverhampton, Councillor Roger Lawrence. Well done Sunny, you are a model for us all.