What our members say

LGPro has a diverse membership made up of people working at all levels of Local Government in both metropolitan, regional and rural Councils. Our members have many drivers for choosing LGPro as their professional member association with many of our more experienced Fellow Members wanting to give back and share their knowledge with others in the sector, while our Young Professional Members can see that LGPro can open doors for them and helps them to progress their career.

Hear from some of our members and find out why they value their LGPro membership.
 





    Ajay Ramdas
    Senior Business Excellence & Risk Advisor
    Moorabool Shire Council
 
Ajay joined LGPro to network and interact with professionals in the sector and learn from their experience. He has been involed in SIGs as a convenor, is a mentor in the Mentoring Program, has completed training programs and seeks and shares knowledge through the online forms.

What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
LGPro SIGs are great to netowrk and learn, especially if you are new to Local Government or your role. One thing that never changes is the willingness of LGPro members to help and support eachother. I become a mentor as I believe I have a responsibility to pass on the guidance and benefits I have received from my mentors and fellow professionals throughout my career to others who may be in a similar position. I tell my mentee to capitalise on their strength to achieve their goals. To be aware of their weaknesses but focus on developing strengths. Your goals will become visible to you when you are confident of your strengths and you will be able to channel your energy towards your success.





    Angela Umback
    Human Resources Coordinator
    Mildura Rural City Council
 
Angela joined LGPro to undertake the Ignite Program and then went onto complete the Emerging Leaders Program in 2016. She is a mentor in the Mentoring Program, has attended Annual Conferences and is a member of the Learning & Development SIG.

What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
I've found the networks, resources and training to be fantastic. As I am responsbile for developing and sourcing training and professional development opportunities for Council staff, LGPro has proven to be really valuable. The mentoring I received through LGPro programs changed my perspective and my career path. I found it so empowering that I wanted to give something back. I was hesitate at first becuase I live in a regional area and thought the distance might be too difficult, but I have a fantastic mentee who has embraced the opportunity and hasn't let the fact we can't meet face-to-face very often dampen her enthusiasm or desire to grow her career.





    Mauro Bolin
    General Manager Community Sustainability
    Kingston City Council
 
Mauro joined LGPro to be part of a network of Local Government professionals and has enjoyed the opportunity to connect with professionals and leaders which has helped him to get the best from the sector and also to contribute as much as possible. He has participated in information seminars, conferences and received advice and gained different perspectives and insights from colleagues at SIG meetings.

What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
Being an LGPro member has provided me with the opportunity to support capacity building and skill development through information and professional development. This has definitely assisted in advancing my career. Changes and associated disruption will always be part of our daily issues having the professional development opportunity, forums to understand and discuss changes and impact, connect with other professional (technical and leadership) to gain different perspectives keeps us alert and engaged. My advice to others is to be informed and gather different perspectives in complex or challenging/changing circumstances. Sharpen your interpersonal skills; relationships matter! Be proactive and use good data to support decision making. Seek feedback on things to help you enhance performance.





    Jason Watts
    Team Leader Assessment & Inclusion Services
    Greater Shepparton City Council
 
Jason joined LGPro in 2000 after moving from the public health sector to gain a better understanding of how the hundreds of services Councils deliver help to shape and influence the culture of their communities. He has completed the Ignite and Emerging Leaders Programs and has attended the Aged & Disabilty Services Seminar, Annual Conference and SIG meetings.

What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
LGPro has given me an opportunity to explore and understand the sector and to meet new and interesting people from across Victoria. The skills, knowledge and contacts I have made through LGPro programs have given me the confidence to take on opportunities including an Acting Manager role. I have met amazing people who are now part of my professional network, and are both supportive and share my passion for Local Government and community.





    Justine Resta
    Transformational Lead
    Ballarat City Council
 
What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
I feel like there are so many reasons why I value being a member. For me it means feeling like I have a voice in how we shape the sector either through feedback or via the LGPro Board. And then there's having direct access not only to all events but also the Special Interest Groups and senior leaders and CEOs in Local Government, plus on top of that there's the ongoing professional development opportunities offered that are tailored to the Local Government environment.

How have LGPro programs, conferences and Special Interest Groups helped you in your career?
Participating in the LGPro Emerging Leaders Program in 2009 was a massive turning point in my career. I had an unbelievable year working with colleagues from other councils at various levels of management - which broke down barriers and created networks of people I could turn to whether professionally or personally. I still keep in touch and catch up with a few people from that Emerging Leaders group, who I would consider great friends now. From there, I was then provided opportunities to get involved with other programs such as volunteering on a working group to set the theme and agenda for a CEO forum, scribing at the LGPro CEO sessions, to even presenting during the LGPro annual conference. If you do not actively participate in those opportunities, then it is hard for people to see who you are and what you're all about. LGPro provides so many opportunities to do this and it creates a platform for others to see your value and potential, which then leads to bigger and better career opportunities. Without a doubt, I can hand on heart say that people who have seen my efforts through all the LGPro activities I have been part of have been the ones who have provided those opportunities for me in regards to where I have landed in my career, including my current role.

     



     Paula Jormakka
     Early Childhood Services Community Liaison Officer
     Banyule City Council


What do you value the most about being a member of LGPro?
 Definitely the varied opportunities to connect with other Local Government professionals. I recently submitted a nomination to join the LGPro board and was contacted by a number of former and current colleagues who advised that they had voted for me, which was sincerely appreciated! 

What is your most memorable experience at an LGPro event?
Being embarrassed at my glasses fogging up because of tears listening to a key note speaker at the LGPro Women’s Conference a few years ago. She was truly amazing and inspirational. 

How has participating in our programs, conferences and Special Interest Groups helped you in your career? 
Participating in the LGMA Challenge as both participant and mentor has really taken me out of my comfort zone along with developing a number of skills to further enhance my understanding of the sector. The mentor part was more of a stretch for me as I had to hold myself back from waiting to pitch in and help out! Oh, and the no talking thing at the LGMA Challenge Day was the worst!






     Rory Neeson
     
Manager Community Relations
     
Corangamite Shire Council

The most valuable thing I value as an LGPro member is the networking opportunities and professional development sessions that I am able to attend.

How has LGPro helped your career? 
I completed the LGPro Emerging Leaders Program in 2012 which gave me the confidence to progress from a Coordinator to a Manager in a new Council. I also enjoy attending (and being on the organising committee) the Annual Conference where there is a wide variety of learning opportunities, inspiring speakers and networking available that is relevant to people across the sector.

What local issues are you passionate about? 
Being the Manager of Community Relations at Corangamite Shire, I really am passionate about communicating to and helping the community find out the information they require from Council. I also try to drive the importance of listening to our communities and ensuring they are involved in decision making that effects their lives.

What do you think is the key to creating positive change in your community, and how can Local Government play a greater role? 
Listening to our communities and our customers’ needs and then trying to provide services to meet these needs or advocate on their behalf.

What do you think Local Government does best, and what can it do better? 
Local Government is great at delivering services to the community. I think we can get better at engaging with the young generation to ensure they understand the varied role that local government plays and how they can engage/work with Council to ensure their needs are met both now and into the future.





   Jennifer Bednar
   Manager Innovation & Performance
   Yarra Ranges Council

 
LGPro provides amazing support to its members. As a professional development body, they are focused on creating better Local Government professionals – across all levels. My advice would be to get involved in as many networking and educational opportunities as possible, as these often open additional connections and opportunities to learn.

How has LGPro helped your career? 
As an Emerging Leaders Graduate, I cannot recommend more highly the great experience that being involved in a year long program provided. The people on the program were fantastic, and the monthly theme provided inspiration and learning that I could apply back in the workplace. As a group, many of us still catch up and share our Local Government stories, and it has been great to see many advance on to more senior roles within their career. Equally, my involvement in SIGs across the years as influenced my ability to collaborate across the sector, and learn from those who have experienced many of the challenges we all face.

What makes a good leader? 
Great leaders need to inspire change in others – both in their thinking and actions. They need to demonstrate a clear commitment toward their vision for the future, and use good humour and humility to establish connection with a broad range of people. A great leader is someone you want to know, someone you want to listen to and be around. Thankfully, we have plenty of great leaders within Local Government – and LGPro is there to help them grow.





    Bradley Thomas
    Acting Director Corporate Services
    Mount Alexander Shire Council

 
“There are a lot of networking opportunities within Local Government but I found that I was continuing to meet others within my own profession (finance). So I joined LGPro to network with individuals across all the industries that make up Local Government. LGPro provides fantastic opportunities for learning and development, which is delivered in modern formats and the content is relevant, especially to me as a younger executive in Local Government. One of my favourite LGPro moments was when I attended the Annual Conference earlier this year and met for the first time our group undertaking the Emerging Leaders 2017 Program, a fantastic night and great way to meet a bunch of strangers that I'm already calling good friends."