Dr George Wilkinson
Dr George Wilkinson recently completed his PhD titled ‘A Scarcity of Large Non-Capital Cities: A national analysis of the drivers of settlement in Australia,’ which examined how institutions sculpt economic geography in Australia. George has expertise in strategy, organisational design, and change management. He has recently commenced a role as the Corporate Development Manager at the City of Karratha, following previous roles as a management consultant. George has a PhD in regional development, institutional economics and economic geography from UWA, holds a master of business administration from the University of Cape Town, a master of science from UWA and bachelor of arts from the University of California.
Natalie Collard is the CEO of Farmers for Climate Action.
She was previously the EO of Food and Fibre Great South Coast.
Kerry Anderson OAM
In this episode, we meet Robert Prestipino, a passionate design thinker & project innovator for regional leaders seeking to create places that will thrive in the future.
Robert is a qualified urban designer, registered landscape architect, corporate member of the Planning Institute of Australia and an Australian Certified Economic Developer. His work has received 19 national and international awards for his best practice approach to creating better places for people and business. His revitalisation project Our Town Our Future secured $15 million in project funding for a regional community of 12,000 people.
BONUS: Focus on Toowoomba
Get to know Toowoomba before the National Regional and Economic Development Summit.
Chatting with three economic and regional development leaders from Toowoomba and the Darling Downs region, Neil Butler our podcast host discovers Toowoomba is the largest inland regional centre in Australia, it has an international inland port, a diverse industry base, an emerging café culture and is home to many cultures.
This bonus podcast will give you an insight into Toowoomba’s economic development, upcoming significant projects as well as the lead organisations who are helping to deliver the Summit.
Hon. Mia Davies MLA
Mia Davies was born in 1978 to Dexter and Leonie Davies and raised in the Wheatbelt, on a farm near Wyalkatchem. Prior to entering Parliament, Ms Davies worked as a policy adviser for the Leader of the Parliamentary National Party, executive officer at the Chamber of Minerals and Energy and as a communications consultant. She holds a Bachelor of Marketing and Media from Murdoch University.
Ms Davies was first elected to represent the Agricultural Region at the 2008 State election. At the 2013 State election, Ms Davies successfully contested the seat of Central Wheatbelt for The Nationals WA.
Ms Davies made history in 2013 becoming the first female to be appointed Deputy Leader of The Nationals WA. Shortly afterwards she was appointed to Cabinet as the Minister for Water; Forestry, and in 2014 added Sport and Recreation to her Ministerial responsibilities.
As Minister, Ms Davies oversaw projects including the Optus Stadium, the expansion of WA’s irrigated agriculture sector through the Water for Food initiative, and championed increased participation of women in sport.
In 2017, Ms Davies was elected as Parliamentary Leader of The Nationals WA, becoming the first female leader of the National Party in Australia.
Following the 2021 State election, Ms Davies became the Opposition Leader for Western Australia, marking the first time a member of The Nationals WA has held the title since 1947. Ms Davies is the third female to hold the title of WA Opposition Leader, each from a different party – former Labor Premier Carmen Lawrence and Liberal leader Liza Harvey.
An alliance opposition has been formed between The Nationals WA and the WA Liberal Party, the first formal opposition arrangement to be agreed between the two parties since 2005.
In 2023, Ms Davies stood down from the position of Leader and by extension Leader of the Opposition. Her Deputy at the time Shane Love MLA was endorsed unanimously by the Party Room on 30 January 2023 as the new Leader.
Ms Davies is passionate about improving services and infrastructure in regional WA, in particular education, health and aged care. She truly believes regional WA deserves better as the engine room of the State and any improvements to the regions will benefit the entirety of WA.
This episode is sponsored by 150 Square - www.150square.com.au