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President’s Report 2023 AGM

In my report last year I indicated that it would be my fifth and final year as President. As the year progressed, and with the support of the Executive Committee, I have renominated for President again for the next 12 month.

I have made this call knowing that there is still much more that we as a Chamber need to achieve in the next year and beyond.

While 2023 has presented many challenges to our economy nationally as well as globally, I believe the Sunshine Coast, and Maroochydore in particular, is well placed to weather any major disruptions.

There are some industries such as tourism, hospitality and construction which have gone through some very challenging times during and post Covid and we are always conscious of the affect that rising interest rates and the cost of living have on these sectors.

We will continue to extoll the many benefits of living and working in Maroochydore.

We are in a fortunate position to have a number of major developments within our community including the Maroochydore City Centre which has continue to thrive under the tripartite leadership of Sunshine Coast Council, SunCentral and Walker Corporation.

I encourage you to continue to support those Maroochydore City Centre businesses whether they be hospitality or commercial.


We have a number of well established businesses operating across Maroochydore and we thank those who have chosen to become a sponsor or a member of our chamber. Wherever and whenever possible, we recommend that our members support these businesses.

We are now within the 10 year window of the 2032 Olympics which will present many lasting social, cultural and economic opportunities for generations to come.

Mass transport continues to be one of the big issues about which we advocate, particularly the delivery of passenger rail to the Maroochydore CBD which remains a priority and continues to be the focus of the Chamber.

Our Chamber has continued its growth trajectory during the 2022/2023 period, as appears from the excellent report tabled this evening by our departing Treasurer, Lachlan Ballinger.

This is Lachlan’s last year on our Executive Team so we thank Lachlan and his team at Yield Advisory for their outstanding support over the past few years, including providing the venue for this morning’s coffee and connect and AGM.

Our membership currently sits at around 320. A far cry from a few years ago and a lot of that is due to the support of our members and the manner in which we seek to connect with and be relevant with the local business community.

From a sponsorship perspective, we are buoyed by the enthusiasm of all our sponsors including a number of new businesses who are keen to come on board.

The Chamber remains in a very solid financial position.

My sincere thanks to all members and sponsors (old and new) for your continued support of the Chamber.


I cannot do what I do as President without the outstanding support of our Executive Committee who generously donate their time and expertise to support our business community.

In our latest Chamber newsletter I said our current committee members have the skill and expertise to successfully run a privately owned company of any size. We as a business community are very fortunate to have access to this high level of expertise.

I do want to mention all the current committee members starting with vice president Jakki Goodall, treasurer Lachlan Ballinger, secretary Charmain Bastian, Simon Rub, Mat Walker, Peppi Bueti, Anita Piers, Richard Turnbull and William Thompson.

Lachlan Ballinger, Charmain Bastian, Simon Rub and Mat Walker will be leaving us this year and we thank them for their outstanding contribution.

We will welcome to the committee: Cameron Klupfel from Evolve Accounting along with, Richard Van Lohuizen from Shine Lawyers, Simone Bell the new sales manager at GSL media (Mix and Sea FM).

The other newbies who will join us are Lauren Smith from Smith Madden Creative Agency, Paul Robertson from BBC Digital and Will Wilson from Watermark Constructions.

Welcome all.


I would also like to continue to heap praise on Min Swan and her team at White House International we couldn’t do what we do without you.

Over the past few years Min, Maja, Annika and Ashlynn have played a vital role in our ongoing success. From event management to sponsorship and membership engagement through to social media posts, White House are fundamental to our success. Without doubt we would not be in the position we are in today without you.

This year we also engaged Sharon Dryden be to our membership officer. Sharon has been a resounding success with her ability to communicate with members.  I am sure anyone who has spoken or met Sharon would attest to her warm and enthusiastic nature, which is synonymous with our chamber.

We have continued to engage with other Chambers on the Coast and enjoy a particularly close connection with the Kawana Chamber and the Coolum Chamber where we have held joint events together.


Meanwhile the Young Chamber has chosen to separate from our chamber and, with our full blessing they will now stand on their own two feet.

We have also continued to support the national award-winning Migrant Work Ready Program which has been driven by our executive committee members Peppi Bueti and Mat Walker. A number of these participants have come along to our events and each of the 25 participants received complimentary membership for the year.

We would also like to acknowledge Hirsty and the crew at Southern Cross Austereo for the use of their podcast facilities to create our Chambercast with The President and Pep. This is another fun and innovative way we communicate with our members and the broader community, and we thank those guests who have joined us to share their journey and experiences.

With the national referendum upon us it’s important to note that we have also continued to seek to engage with the First Nation members of the business community led by Anita Piers. We strongly believe in self-determination for our indigenous people, and we will continue to seek out and foster these relationships.

Led by Richard Turnbull, we have also maintained a close working relationship with the Tech Industry Alliance.


In closing I would like to acknowledge our sponsors, particularly our major corporate sponsor Walker Corporation along with all our other sponsors who are too numerous to mention. Frankly, we can’t do what we do without your ongoing support. Thank You.

I would also like to acknowledge the support that we receive from Fiona Simpson and Joe Natoli who are regular attendees at our gatherings.

Finally, I thank you all for joining us today, it’s an incredible turn out which I believe validates our hard work to support the local business community.

Please continue to attend our events, read our newsletter and social media posts, listen to our podcasts and be an active member of our local business community and your chamber.

I move that my report for 2022/2023 be accepted.

Can I have a seconder please?