“The next year is one of the biggest is Scotland’s history as we decide where our future lies. Do we separate Scotland from the rest of the United Kingdom or maintain the Union.
"It is therefore a great honour to be appointed as a Shadow Minister in Labour’s Scotland Office team and to be asked to play a key role in making the case that Scotland is better together.
"However, as well as making the case for Scotland to remain as part of the UK, I will also be focusing on holding the UK Tory led Coalition’s Government to account. These are really tough times for Scots.
"No more so than here in Dumfries and Galloway. We are in the midst of a jobs crisis, living standards are falling and people are really worried about the future. More than ever, people in our area need a strong voice fighting their corner”
More top news
In the first of ITV Border's special Borders Railway reports, we look at the impact the new line could have on the area's economy.
Find out why farmers in the south of Scotland are getting less for their lamb, and how they're trying to change things.
Do you know what's been happening in the Border region over the past seven days? Test yourself in our weekly news quiz.