The South West Development Commission’s board has moved to virtual meetings in order to make decisions about regional priorities from a socially safe distance during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first online board meeting was held Friday April 17 and comprised a mix of new and familiar faces.
Two recently appointed board members were among those who participated in decision-making.
SWDC chairman Nick Belyea said he was pleased to have the board bolstered with the additions of Australia’s South West chief executive officer Catrin Allsop and City of Bunbury Councillor Tresslyn Smith.
“This was only the second meeting for Catrin and Tresslyn, having been fortunate to have them join the group around the table in Bunbury earlier this year,” Mr Belyea said.
“SWDC and the region will benefit from having Catrin and Tresslyn’s experience – and I welcome them to the team.”
Mrs Smith said there were several reasons why she was looking forward to being part of the SWDC board.
“I am honoured to be a Local Government representative on the board and I thank the City of Bunbury for nominating me,” Mrs Smith said.
“I was born in Bunbury and have lived all of my life in the South West. Because of that I believe I have an affinity for the South West and its people.
“I want to work with other members of the board and the executive of the Commission to build on the achievements of past members and to try and continue the growth and wellbeing of the South West, particularly in these challenging times.”
Ms Allsop said the South West has the ability to continue to develop its reputation as a destination of choice for those that seek to live, work and visit.
“In this disrupted world, the South West continues to be one of Western Australia’s premier regions to promote innovative ways of thinking and problem solving,” Ms Allsop said.
“I look forward to having the opportunity to help develop this further and make a positive impact to the South West region that I reside and work in as we recover and rebuild.”
Retiring General Manager – Projects at the Talison Lithium Greenbushes Operations Pat Scallan was been reappointed to the board.
The SWDC board is the governing body responsible to the Regional Development Minister for setting the direction and priorities of the Commission. It has six members selected from community and local government nominations, and Ministerial appointments. The Commission’s chief executive officer is also a member of the Board.
Membership currently comprises former Broome International Airport CEO Nick Belyea, 2017 Telstra WA Business Woman of the Year Jennie Franceschi, Shire of Nannup president Tony Dean, General Manager – Projects at the Talison Lithium Greenbushes Operations Pat Scallan, Australia’s South West CEO Catrin Allsop, City of Bunbury Councillor Tresslyn Smith, and SWDC chief executive officer Mellisa Teede.