On Thursday 2nd February, AVCL launched the 2023 Annual Program at an event attended by participants, workplace funders, scholarship sponsors and program supporters at the Charles Sturt University Regional Study Centre in Wangaratta.
The 21 program participants herald from across the North East and Border region and represent a rich and diverse cross section of private and public industries – business, community, government, environment, rural industries, arts, education and health. Participants were selected following an effective and over-subscribed recruitment drive and bring with them a deep commitment to their community, and the burgeoning potential to create change at a local level.
Our 2023 participants, and their funders, are:
Sean Barrett – Wangaratta Turf Club
Kirsty Branagan – Rural City of Wangaratta
Jenny Corser – Alpine Shire Council
Irene Day – June Canavan Foundation (Scholarship)
Gianna Verdini Fensom – CFA (Country Fire Authority) (Scholarship)
Kane Fitzpatrick – Northeast Health Wangaratta
Sarah Glass – Gardiner Dairy Foundation (Scholarship)
Matthew Hicks – DEECA Hume
Amanda Hore – Alpine Shire Council
Domenica Hunkin – RCoW Community Grants Scholarship
Lauren Kelly – Rural City of Wangaratta
Maria Kraus – Quercus Beechworth (Scholarship)
Romina McEwan – Hugh Williamson Foundation (Scholarship)
Skye Rhodes-Mitchell – GOTAFE
Rosie Suter – Australian Alpine Valleys Agribusiness Forum (Scholarship)
Kate Walsh – Telstra (Scholarship)
Paige Zamperoni – Centre Against Violence
Attendees at the launch heard from a range of speakers, including AVCL Board Chair, Judy Charlton, and Annual Program Patron, John G Brown, AO. In addition, Anne Stelling of Charles Sturt University shared information about their offerings, and AVCLP Alumni, Megan Hunt and Diarmuid Kelly, spoke passionately of their experience within the program, and recounted the opportunities and initiatives they have engaged with post-program.
In launching the program, John G Brown, AO reflected upon the ongoing success of the program, and urged participants to embrace a sense of personal responsibility in answering the call for community action; he quoted William Johnsen “if it is to be, it is up to me.”
We thank our 2023 workplace, scholarship and program supporters, with special thanks to Charles Sturt University for sponsoring the venue, The Elements Catering And Cakes for an endless array of delicious canapes, and Marc Bongers of North East Photography for the snaps.