Table Of ContentsNext Page


Agnes Gannon

Agnes Gannon is an international consultant in the field of Community Economic Development (CED) and Rural Tourism. Her academic background is in agriculture, home economics, and socio-economics. Her experience and expertise enable her to work as a consultant with governments, educational and professional institutions and community organisations on a national and international basis.

Her work is mainly characterised by her holistic Global Management Approach (GMA) to development; an approach which was initiated and developed by her for Food and Agriculture Organisation (F AO) of the United Nations and which is being used as a model for rural development in many countries. The GMA approach focuses on the process of "Changing People to Change Things" thereby enabling people to cope with future developments through innovative strategic thinking.

Her special areas of expertise include:

  • Management and change; community economic development and capacity building; adult education and training; rural extension development; rural tourism development; project management development.
  • She has written five Technical Dossiers on Rural Development and related issues, which are published by FAO, and she has written and published numerous papers in this field. She also presented and directed many international workshops and summer schools on rural development and rural tourism related areas.

Some of her past experiences include:

  • Director of National Socio Economics Extension Service for Rural Families in Ireland. Regional Officer for Rural Development with the F AO, with responsibility for CED programs in the European countries.
  • CED Consultant to the Governments of Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Croatia, Chech Republic and Romania. Consultant to Women's World Banking.
  • Consultant to Agriculture Bank of Greece on education programs in CED.

Present work commitments include:

  • Expert with the European Union -in the 'European Observatory for Innovation and Rural Development'. - Consultant to European Union Rural Development LEADER programs. Lecturer- Maynooth University, Dublin.
  • Consultant with F AO for community economic development training and program implementation.
  • Project Consultant with Gorta, the national Irish agency for rural development projects in developing countries.
  • Consultant to Governments and non government organisations in Europe and New Zealand for local community development and rural tourism development-

Notes on her work in Australia and New Zealand:

In 1990 she conducted three intensive training programs on Extension Management for Extension Agents; Rural Development for Extension Agents and Project Leaders; and, Rural Tourism for Project Leaders. In 1997 she was keynote speaker at the Australian Business Conference in Newcastle.

During 1993, 1994, 1996 and 1997 she conducted a number of seminars and education programs in New Zealand on aspects of community economic development and rural tourism. In 1994 she was a keynote speaker at the Conference: GATT A Big Deal for New Zealand. In 1996 she was a keynote speaker at the Inaugural Rural Tourism Conference, Methven, Canterbury. She intends to go back to New Zealand in June -July this year.

John Wise

John is currently a development facilitator with the New Zealand Department of Labour's Community Employment Group, a nation wide organisation which facilitates community design and ownership. of initiatives in response to local economic, employment and ; community development issues.

Prior to joining CEG in 1990, John was engaged in adult education, leading a team that explored innovative ways of identifying and responding appropriately to community learning needs. It should be no surprise that, in his current role, he is still committed to the principles espoused by Paolo Freire assisting communities to discover what it takes, in practice to become empowered enough to make a sustainable positive difference to their political, social economic and cultural condition.

A frequent conference presenter, John also prepares resource material and facilitates training L and development events for colleagues and community leaders throughout New Zealand. He has studied rural revitalisation programs first hand in Minnesota USA.

Peter Kenyon

Peter is the founder and director of the h1temational Initiatives for the Development of Enterprising Action and Strategies (IDEAS) concerned with the design, implementation and evaluation of local, regional and national employment and economic development policies and projects. He is based in the small town of York where he participates in the family f operations of a small farm and tourism business.

Peter's key areas of interest include community economic development, employment creation policy and programs, new enterprise development, local tourism initiatives, youth development and enterprise, business grow strategies and small town economic revitalisation.

Peter is currently the State Coordinator of Community Builders, a joint project of the West Australian Department of Agriculture's Doing More with Agriculture Project and the West Australian Rural Leadership Program. He is working with a number of groups in Queensland assisting them to adapt and implement Community Builders Programs in their communities.

Bruce McCollum

Bruce McCollum is the Principal of Bruce McCollum & Associates, an economic and community development and natural resource management consultancy business established in 1993 with his wife Sue. He is based at Goondiwindi, 370 kilometres West of Brisbane.

Currently Bruce is the Executive Officer of Border Rivers Food & Fibre, an organisation representing some 800 water users in Queensland and New South Wales on the Macintyre, Dumaresq, Macintyre Brook, Severn and Barwon Rivers. The organisation's role is to advocate and promote the long term sustainability of irrigated agriculture in the Border Rivers. He is also involved with the production of training materials for a Goondiwindi-based civil construction company for use by managers and supervisors in on-the-job training at work locations over a wide area of Queensland and New South Wales.

Bruce's major areas of activity prior to this have been operating his own small business, five years as Economic Development Officer with Goondiwindi District Promotions Inc, and two years as coordinator of the Goondiwindi Main Street Program. He was a facilitator at most of the Future Search Workshops run by the Department of Business, Industry and Regional Development throughout Queensland in the early '90s and has designed and led a variety of other planning workshops.

Bruce was an Alderman on Goondiwindi Town Council from 1991 until 1994 and participates actively in a wide range of community and professional organisations.

His work has included:

  • preparation of regional and local economic development strategies specific project planning and implementation opportunity identification projects
  • organisational, strategic and business planning
  • feasibility studies on community-based projects surveys

Some specific projects have been:

  • Preparation and implementation of key elements of the Central Coast Regional Economic Development Strategy for the Central Coast of New South Wales, a region between Sydney and Newcastle with a population of over 265,000. Organisational development with the Central Coast Regional Development Corporation.
  • An Interim Strategy for the economic development of Southern Inland Queensland, an area covered by 29 local authorities from Toowoomba to Thargomindah, and from the NSW border to Taroom. An Industry Attraction Program for Southern Inland Queensland, involving consultation with 29 local authorities and ten economic development organisations, production of marketing materials including a regional industry attraction web site, and targeting of selected industries outside the region.
  • An opportunity identification study, implementation strategy and action plan for five Councils in the Maranoa region of South West Queens land, resulting in a blueprint for economic development and creation of employment in the region. A feasibility study on enterprise centres (business incubators) and a strategic plan and business plan for the economic development of the Maranoa region.
  • A feasibility study on the commercial production of native plants and an associated , ecotourism centre in the Sunshine Coast region ,
  • Feasibility studies on Maryborough heritage products manufacture and the establishment of the Heritage City Artisans Guild.
  • Design, organisation and delivery of eight National Rangelands Management Strategy r workshops in Queensland and facilitation at the national workshop in Canberra.
  • Development of a strategic plan framework for Landcare in the Northern Territory, with workshops in Katherine in 1996 and Darwin in 1997.

Graham Larcombe

MC (Economics) Melb 1991; M Urban Studies Macquarie U 1981; B Ec Sydney 1973

Graham is one of Australia's leading applied development economists. Presently a Director of National Economics (NIEIR), his areas of responsibility include local and regional economic analysis, design and management of local, rural and regional economic development strategies for all tiers of government, business and industry development strategies, urban and regional planning and infrastructure projects.

His paper will discuss the need for strengthening community networks to revitalise rural economies, and will emphasize why new approaches, involving local businesses, community groups, shire councils and educational institutions are needed.

Chris Capel

BA Dip Ed UNE Grad Dip Lib QUT

Chris Capel is a Senior Project Officer in the Office of Rural Communities teleworking this job from her home "Evesham" in the Longreach district where she has lived since 1983. , Chris is a mother of three, a partner in her family's grazing business and is an ex teacher. She has been actively involved for some years in rural. telecommunications issues and in particular I with the QUT based rural women's telecommunications project "Enhancing Rural Women's - Access to Interactive Communications Technologies". She is President of the local branch of i the Queensland Rural Women's Network (QRWN) and western regional director of the State Executive of QRWN.

Sue Fairley

Sue as a concerned parent saw the need to become involved in the planning and development of her children ' s education. She took the opportunity offered by the system to become more involved and from a very basic beginning, endeavoured to make a difference by constructively participating, eventually becoming involved at a State and National level.

Sue was recognised for her efforts with the 1996 Director General's Award for "Outstanding Contribution to Education".

Sue has found the most rewarding area of involvement has been with PCAP (priority Country Area Program), a Commonwealth funded program to assist students in rural and remote areas.

Sue and her husband Steve are dairy farmers on the Southern Atherton Tablelands and have 2 children, Jillian in Year 12 at Malanda State High School and Scott in Year 9 at Thornburgh College, Charters Towers. Sue is currently very involved in a number of diverse committees ranging from education, arts, agriculture, technology and community development. She is also a member of the Queensland Rural Women's Network and of the Ravenshoe Chamber of Commerce.

Brenda-Anne Norman

Executive Officer Burdekin Community Association, Vice President of the Queensland Council of Social Service

Vicki Dickman

Vicki Dickman is the Project Development Officer with the Growzone Development Network. Vicki has been involved in Community Economic Development since 1992 on projects ranging from Tourist Information Centres to Student Hostels and the Chinchilla Melon Festival and most recently a successful $2.6 million application to the Networking the Nation Program. Vicki has sourced funding for projects from both the public and private sector. In 1994, Vicki was awarded the Queensland and National Young Achiever of the Year Award for Regional Development and last year was listed as one of Australia's Top 100 Women in Agriculture.

Top Of PageNext Page