Inspiring speaker draws roadmap for Gympie’s best future

CONGRATULATIONS again to the Gympie Chamber of Commerce on setting another new record yesterday, getting a diverse crowd of 150 to the Golf Club for its last breakfast meeting of the year.

MAKING THINGS HAPPEN: Chamber of Commerce president Tony Godman, Pinetech CEO Justin Lippiatt, USQ Professor John Cole and Brendan Allen at Wednesday’st Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting, the last one this year.
MAKING THINGS HAPPEN: Chamber of Commerce president Tony Godman, Pinetech CEO Justin Lippiatt, USQ Professor John Cole and Brendan Allen at Wednesday’st Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting, the last one this year.

Guest speaker Professor John Cole OAM was just as inspiring as Bernard Salt and painted a fascinating picture of what this region “has”, and how it needs to preserve and nurture what it values most - and what it is “best” at.

Brian Lambert, Mel Gastigar, Chris Thomas, Tania and Wayne Bannan, Jason Margetts, Ann Maree Margetts, Margaret Cochrane, Cherie Carlson and Steve Evans from Gympie Regional Realty.
Brian Lambert, Mel Gastigar, Chris Thomas, Tania and Wayne Bannan, Jason Margetts, Ann Maree Margetts, Margaret Cochrane, Cherie Carlson and Steve Evans from Gympie Regional Realty.

The big messages I took away were:

We need to rebrand our beautiful region the way we want to be branded - not the branding imposed on us by the decades-old gun control debate or our history with One Nation.

We need to decide who we are and who we want to be, and to then better communicate “who we are” to the rest of the world.

University of Southern Queensland (USQ) Professor OAM John Cole.
University of Southern Queensland (USQ) Professor OAM John Cole.

We need a more diverse and inclusive council (women and young people of Gympie region, we need you to put your hand up at the March 2020 election). An all-male, middle-aged, white council (and state and federal MP) is not a good look, does not send a good message and not an ideal team.

Dolly Jensen, Bruce Devereaux and Rae Gate.
Dolly Jensen, Bruce Devereaux and Rae Gate.

We need to get thie Bruce Highway Bypass happening asap and to reclaim our city.

We need to let people know the real Gympie region; not just the Gympie region they see as they drive through on the highway.

2020 James Nash school captains attended the breakfast meeting (from left) Joseph Greer, Dillyn Blackburn, Lillianne Chambers and Noah Strachan.
2020 James Nash school captains attended the breakfast meeting (from left) Joseph Greer, Dillyn Blackburn, Lillianne Chambers and Noah Strachan.

Gympie Regional Council announced at the meeting it would revealing the region’s new “brand” early next year, after extensive community consultation.

Greg Martoo and Adam Madill.
Greg Martoo and Adam Madill.

I look forward to that reveal and to taking this great region into the future.

Gympie RSL Club manager Steve Lancaster and chairwoman Jan Collins.
Gympie RSL Club manager Steve Lancaster and chairwoman Jan Collins.