From the CEO’s Desk

Thu 13 Feb 2020

RCCIWA February Teleconference Wrap Up
We held our second teleconference for 2020 on Tuesday and it was great to hear twelve of our members represented on the line as well as CCIWA and the SBDC. The monthly teleconference is such a great opportunity to receive policy updates from the SBDC and CCIWA as well as to hear about and learn from all the activities and issues our members our working on and dealing with. Our members do find the one-hour teleconference very valuable. A big thank you to Naomi and Boyd from Telstra Regional WA for providing the teleconference line at no cost to us or our members. Some of the takeaways from the conversation are highlighted below:

  • Nikki Forrest, Policy & Advocacy Officer with the SBDC joined us to give us an update on their activities and main pieces of policy work. We hear from the SBDC each month and it is a great way to keep updated and also to give direct feedback to inform their work. If you have not checked out the SBDC website lately, I would thoroughly recommend that you do here – it is a fantastic resource!   Some key pieces of policy work they are focussed on currently are:
    - Preparing a submission to the WA State Governments Draft Aviation Strategy
    - ​Preparing a submission to the Federal Treasury’s proposed enhancements to Unfair Contract Terms Legislation.
    - The effect the coronavirus is having on small businesses all over WA
  • Tom Lamond, Senior Policy Advisor with CCIWA joined us to give an overview of some of their policy priorities as well as sharing valuable information with all on the line. Including:
    • They are working with Main Roads WA on their procurement policies and settings. CCIWA are particularly interested in any direct feedback from businesses as to issues or suggestions they have regarding Main Roads procurement.
    • Preparing a submission on the Workplace Health and Safety Harmonisation with particular concern regarding Industrial Manslaughter.
    • CCIWA CEO, Chris Rodwell is on the WA Government’s Streamline WA committee – so they are keen to hear any direct examples of regulatory burdens or processes that make it hard for businesses to carry out their operations. See here for more info. You can find out more about CCIWA here.  
  • Benita Cattalini, CEO of the Albany CCI spoke about several activities and projects they are working on currently as well as outlining their amazing 2020 Women’s Leadership Forum which was launched earlier this week and is being held over two days in mid-March in different locations across the Great Southern. Working in collaboration with many organisations and featuring keynote speakers, interactive workshops and networking opportunities -  this event will celebrate International Women’s Day and will also be live streamed.
  • Simone de Been, CEO of the KBCCI gave us a wrap up on the very successful Welcome to the Community Expo held last weekend and also spoke about their capacity register project and her visits to members’ premises over the past month – a great way to strengthen member engagement but also understand what their member does and explain all of the services and benefits the KBCCI offers to them.
  • Emma Morgan, Executive Committee Member from the Dunsborough-Yallingup CCI gave a great overview of the various activities and projects they are involved in or organising including signing on to the WALGA Earth Climate Change declaration, organising workshops, working in strong collaboration with the Busselton CCI and their upcoming Business Council of Australia event being held in Busselton. They have been flat out! Find out more about the DYCCI here.
  • Joanne Fabling, CEO of  the MWCCI updated us on several major events they are currently planning and organising for 2020 including their Business Excellence Awards being held in June and their two day economic Summit being held in July with a focus on their growing food industry and all businesses involved in that supply chain both ways. Joanne is also travelling to Carnarvon in the next few weeks to spend some time with the Carnarvon CCI and see how they might work together.
  • Tara van Beuningen, Administration Officer  from the Collie CCI spoke about their inaugural Welcome to the Community Expo with 43 stallholders, which was held last Saturday and was very well received. Tara also spoke about several other activities they have on the go such as their Local Procurement Workshop and the planning for their inaugural Business Excellence Awards to be held in October.
  • Elaine Jolliffe , CEO of the Broome CCI spoke about the enormous number of events they are currently planning and organising as well as their focus on working with key stakeholders in the region to build collaborative partnerships. Elaine will also be travelling to Canberra in March to represent Broome in Showcase WA – this is a fantastic opportunity and well done to the Broome CCI!
  • Sumer Addy, CEO of the Denmark Chamber of Commerce, gave us an update of some of the activities they are involved in and planning including the Great Southern Food Producers Guide they are working on with DPIRD as well as their involvement with and support of the Fire Forum being held to understand the nature of fire and climate. 
  • We heard from Mark Seaward, CEO of the BGCCI who gave us an update on their general activities, including several key events they have hosted or are hosting in the next few weeks. They have also been focussing of their Strategic Plan with several sessions conducted over the past few weeks.
  • Millie Milligan, Chair of the Moora Chamber of Commerce gave us an update of their activities which has involved a great deal of planning, setting their events calendar for the year and their new working partnership with the Wheatbelt Business Network. A very exciting year ahead!
  • Bronwyn McLeod, Executive Officer from the Esperance CCI updated us on their huge amount of  activities planned  with their first Business After Hours being held next week and a new program being launched which is all about locals employing locals – they have had a very busy start to 2020.
  • Rachel Thomas, Business Manager from the Wheatbelt Business Network spoke about consolidating their Business After Hours event to encourage members to visit other towns in their region, their Business Excellence Awards being held in May, their focus on local procurement and also the fact that 2020 marks the 10th Year of WBN – Happy Birthday! 

This is only a brief snapshot of the conversations, but as you can read everyone is very busy and focused on providing quality events, support and advocacy for their business communities. If you have not joined us previously for our monthly teleconference – we would love to hear you on the line some time. We hold it on the second Tuesday of each month at 10am. Look out in your inbox for reminders, the agenda and the dial in details.

RCCIWA Members Forum – June 18th and 19th 2020, Perth – Save the Date!
Planning has already commenced for the first biannual RCCIWA Members Forum, to be held in Perth at Parliament House on Thursday June 18th and at a venue to be confirmed soon in Perth on Friday June 19th.  For this first Forum of 2020, we are again looking at what technology we may be able to utilise so that members unable to make it to Perth, can still participate and contribute. We will keep you posted on this.

We will be holding our legendary Business After Hours on Thursday June 18th in the PM – and will get back to you with our host details as soon as they are confirmed.

If you have not attended previously, we would love to see you there. You can read the notes from Day One of our most recent Forum here if you would like to find out more about what the RCCIWA Advocacy Day involves. You will also find the programs from the 2019 November Forum here and here to give you an idea of what is involved.

In order for us to plan the Forum so that it is relevant and informative for you, we would love your feedback on the following – just email me on or Emmi on  with any suggestions you may have:

  • Members of Parliament you would like us to invite
  • Questions for those MP’s
  • Topics and issues, you would love covered on Day two, the Operational Day
  • Any guest speakers you would like to hear from on either day
  • Any suggestions you have for the format and the timings of both days – what you would like to see.

RCCIWA Administrative Items

  • Emmi Taylor is back and is currently updating our membership contact list. If you have any changes to your contacts or would like to add any people, please email Emmi at
  • Please find your “proud to be a member of” logo here – we would love you to use this in your various communication channels and branded collateral.
  • Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and share our page with your members.
  • Please also let us know about any activities, initiatives or events you would like us to include in our weekly newsletter. You will notice that we are including an item each week that showcases a great idea, program or event that one of our members is delivering. If you have something you would like us to share – please send through the details to Emmi.
  • Any events you would like added to our events calendar on our website. If you have a specific logo for that event -could you also send that through, and we will include it.