Journal’s Joe tops poll in community champ hunt

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The first round of voting in the search for Ireland’s community champion has come to a close - and Derry Journal photographer Joe Boland has come out on top.

Joe, already named Donegal Community Champ due to his involvement in community work - most notably a two decade association with Scouting Ireland - polled 4196 votes in the national Calor Community Champion 2012.

Now he goes through to the next round of the competition.

He says he is delighted and surprised to not only progess but to also top the poll.

“Obviously I am very pleased.

“It’s humbling even to have been nominated let alone top the vote.

“Everyone who was nominated is a very worthy contender and any of the finalists will be worthy winners.”

Joe says primarily he is delighted his recognition gives the Scouts movement a higher profile.

In the past he has taken up roles on County, Provincial and National Committees but what he loves most is organising activities for scouts, including camps and challenge days.

The six finalists now face Calor’s Judging Panel, led by TV and radio personality, Hector Ó hEochagáin, along with broadcast legend, Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh.