Shire chief sees growth opportunities

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Amanda O'Halloran will take over as Shire of Derby-West Kimberley chief executive this year.
Camera IconAmanda O'Halloran will take over as Shire of Derby-West Kimberley chief executive this year. Credit: Supplied

Harnessing economic opportunities and collaboration between local governments will be the main focus for the Shire of Derby-West Kimberley as a fresh new face prepares to take on the top management role.

Amanda O’Halloran will officially take over as Shire chief executive in June and plans to hit the ground running to get the most out of any projects in the area that will stimulate the local economy.

Having worked in the Wheatbelt as Shire of Wandering chief executive for nearly five years, Ms O’Halloran said she brought a strong skill set to the role, but engaging with the community would be her first task.

“The biggest thing for me is to not go in with any specific priorities but instead get to know the community and council well so I can get an idea from them about what the priorities should be,” she said.

“There are some real growth opportunities that seem to be presenting themselves in Derby right now and it is all about harnessing these and figuring out how we can use them to further develop the town. I know this is the same view that the council shares and taking advantage of economic activity is my specialty.”

Ms O’Halloran said she was impressed by the amount of collaboration between the four Kimberley shires and she hoped to play a role in this.

“In my current role there are 17 shires working together as we all believe that this is the key to having power and influence,” she said.

“It is fabulous to see this is already in place in the Kimberley as well and we can continue going forward with this collaborative mindset.

“I know Derby are coming off the back of somewhat of a downturn, but I believe there are opportunities to find a new way forward and they are already going the right way about achieving it.”

Shire president Geoff Haerewa said Ms O’Halloran’s strengths in community planning and engagement, as well as her focus on economic development, aligned well with the Shire’s pursuit of sustainable growth.

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