President's Message

Disability Services Minister was generous with his time

Ray Williams, the Disability Services Minister, weaved his way through anti-privatisation protests at the door before speaking at our March luncheon. I am pleased the protesters were respectful of the Minister and our guests.

In another full house of 120 people, we heard from Mr Williams along with David Carey the CEO of ConnectAbility; a local not-for-profit, and Martin Halloran; an Executive Director of the Commonwealth Bank. Martin flew in from Canberra in a light aircraft which ducked and weaved the storms.

Minister Williams highlighted that the NDIS was giving people inclusion, choice and control. The new funding model has not been without controversy and is had its share of difficulties. However, once implemented, the NDIS has the potential to be world’s best practice for disability services.

The Minister went on to say that people are living longer and children with independent living needs can now be supported by the NDIS as their parents age or pass on.  Minister is proud that New South Wales was the first state to sign up to the NDIS.

Martin Halloran explained the de-institutionalisation of disability services.  There is generous funding for community accommodation and the bank is adjusting policy to support this.  He also went on to explain that demand is exceeding supply in the disability services labour market and it is going to be a capacity challenge for the businesses in the space.

I would like to personally thank David Carey for his efforts in bringing this luncheon to life. He was persistent, especially in the middle of a New South Wales cabinet reshuffle where there was uncertainty around who would be the newly appointed minister.

Our next luncheon is not going to disappoint. We have Glenn Carlson, who is an award-winning entrepreneur and co-founder of Australia’s ninth fastest growing company (BRW Fast Starters and Smart Company, 2014), Dent Global. Glenn has an international reputation for being a number one speaker on strategies for fast small business growth, and the best business models for maximising profit.

Founded in 2010, Dent Global is an international world leading business accelerator for small, entrepreneurial, service-based businesses, with offices in the UK, USA, Singapore and Australia, with more than 2000 clients. Dent has launched three bestselling books on business, won major awards and raised more than $500,000 to charities around the globe.

With Australia’s small business sector buoyant and healthy, Glenn’s message is fine tuned for the current climate where there is no better time to be an entrepreneur than now. He has the confidence and the enthusiasm to inspire people to follow their business ideas and build them into hugely successful ventures.

As many people missed out on tickets at the last lunch, I cannot emphasise the importance to promptly buy your tickets to prevent the disappointment of missing out.

See you at the lunches this year,

Dene Kilpatrick | 2017 President