Position: Honorary Research Fellow
Location: SMB Campus E building
Diploma of Public Policy – University of Melbourne - 1979
Bachelor of Arts – La Trobe University - 1976
Chris is chair of the Victorian Goldfields Tourism Executive: one of ten regional tourism boards in Victoria with a current consulting focus on the future of local government, regional engagement and cross-regional collaboration. His areas of specialisation are strategy development, advocacy, public policy, partnership development and change leadership. He leads a major cross-regional cultural and heritage tourism led project–Victorian Goldfields –Australia's Premier Heritage Region. Earlier work history has included senior executive roles in the Victorian Departments of Premier and Cabinet and Education followed by senior corporate assignments in major corporations including BHP Billiton and AXA and corporate consulting with clients have included including NAB and ANZ.
Chris has served as a councillor of Central Goldfields Shire Council which included four consecutive terms as mayor and various associated regional leadership roles including several years on the Ballarat and Central Highlands Regional Planning Committee. He holds a Mayor Emeritus award from the Municipal Association of Victoria. He has addressed numerous conferences both in Australia and overseas and has also been an active commentator in the media (TV, radio, newspapers and journals) on workforce, HR and change management issues and has undertaken advanced studies in globalisation at Cornell University.
Areas of expertise
Capabilities and experience which Chris offers includes being a highly experienced executive, change leader and consultant with key interests and strong capability in public administration and machinery of government, regional development, community strengthening, strategy, leadership, break-through thinking, culture, leadership development, cross-boundary functioning and advocacy.
Chris has deep experience in governance and managing sensitive governmental relations issues and brings a strong understanding of the issues and challenges of regional Victoria and regional and rural communities to the table as well as well-developed strategic solutions and pathways forward. Chris has played an active role consulting to the Municipal Association of Victoria's Future of Local Government program in the areas of high-impact leadership, community change and the development of strategic capability and regional collaboration.
Chris has actively worked in the area of strategic planning in a number of different roles and settings. This has included an extensive range of strategic planning initiatives during a period of over 20 years in the Victorian Public Service including the Department of Premier and Cabinet. Working in major corporate organisations including BHP Billiton and AXA, his work in People Strategy and organisational capability alignment in corporate strategic planning was considered leading edge globally. As a Councillor and Mayor of Central Goldfields Shire he played a key role in developing four year Council Plans and annual reporting processes as well as Regional Strategic Plans and Regional Growth Plans. More recently, as Chair of the Victorian Goldfields Tourism Executive (regional tourism board) Chris led the development of the three year strategic plan for his organisation and the regional input into key Statewide strategic planning as well as having statewide corporate strategic planning management responsibility. He also leads the detailed annual strategic planning process.
Regional and Stakeholder Engagement
Chris has served two terms as a regional municipal councillor including an unprecedented four consecutive terms as mayor, leading major strategic change within his municipality. Chris has also been very active in community development initiatives, cross-boundary community developments and regional activities and has had long term roles on a regional planning committee and as deputy chair of a mayors and CEOs forum over several years. He has deep experience in governance and managing sensitive governmental relations issues and brings a strong understanding of the issues and challenges of regional Victoria and regional and rural communities to the table as well as well-developed strategic solutions and pathways forward
Commencing in 2009, Chris developed, championed and continues to lead a major heritage and tourism cross-regional development project Victoria's Goldfields –Australia's Premier Heritage Region comprising 13 municipalities and several government agencies and regional authorities. A number of initiatives have already been implemented. The project included a proposal to rekindle the proposal for a regionally based nomination for World Heritage Listing of the Castlemaine Diggings National Park. The project was actively supported by many municipalities in the submissions to the recent Parliamentary Inquiry into Heritage Tourism and Ecotourism. Chris led the regional submission and co-ordinated the visit of the Parliamentary Committee to the Goldfields region. The Inquiry report recommended the World Heritage Listing.
In recent months Chris negotiated a memorandum of understanding between the Victorian Goldfields Tourism Executive and the National Trust of Australia (Victoria) relating to an active commitment of the NTAV to become more strategically active in the Goldfields. An early deliverable is a partnership for annual delivery of a combined Goldfields Heritage Festival commencing in 2015. Chris is on a NTAV working party to explore the role for a new NTAV Goldfields region branch.
- Victorian goldfields
- Impact of history on regional development and sustainable communities
- Cultural and heritage tourism
- Cross-boundary collaboration, partnerships and intergovernmental relations
- Success strategies in managing complex multi-partner history and heritage development projects
- Beyond resilience: history and heritage generating community pride and aspirational cultures
Presentations and Conferences
Chris has presented extensively at a large number of symposia, workshops and conferences on a variety of topics including:
- Transformational and culture change and change models
- Strategic Planning
- Place-based needs development
- Victorian Goldfields regional and tourism development
- Victorian Goldfields – Australia's Premier Heritage Region project
- Future of local government and regional collaboration
This presentation material (mostly in PowerPoint format) can be made available on request. Chris welcomes any enquiries in relation to this.
- National Trust of Australia (Victoria)
- Municipal Association of Victoria (Future of Local Government Program)