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Winners of the 2018 Institute of Public Administration Australia WA (IPAA WA) Achievement Awards were announced at a special Awards luncheon held on Friday 29th June 2018 at the Hyatt Regency Perth.

The Achievement Awards offer seven categories for entry, with a total of fifteen awards. Ten open to individuals and five best practice awards for organisations.

Patron’s Award

The highest accolade in public administration in WA awarded to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the State.

WINNER: Eric Lumsden PSM FIPAA
Chair of Commissioners City of Perth

Eric began his career in the public sector in 1966 as a cadet cartographer. After holding various positions across the sector, he was appointed CEO at the City of Swan in 1989 until 2006, when he was appointed CEO of the City of Melville. In 2007, Eric was appointed Director-General of the Department of Planning & Infrastructure, and subsequently was appointed Chairman of the Western Australian Planning Commission.

As a CEO/Director General and Chairman, he was involved in numerous strategic and operational initiatives such as the formation of the North Eastern Corridor of Perth, preparation and review of policy for the Swan Valley, formation of the Midland Redevelopment Authority, consolidation of a number of Regional Development Authorities into the Metropolitan Regional Development Authority and the development of Elizabeth Quay. Eric has shown a strong commitment to all of his roles over the past 53 years in State & Local Government.

Leader of the Year (4 Awards)

The winner of this award will be working in a senior position and have clearly demonstrated leadership qualities. He/She will be respected and demonstrate excellence in leading a team to meet designated objectives and outcomes in the interests of public service.

Murdoch University Leader of the Year Working in State or Federal Government

WINNER: Nina Lyhne
Managing Director Transport Services – Department of Transport

As the Managing Director for Transport Services, Nina Lyhne has continually led key strategies to provide accessible, sustainable and safe transport services and systems to the WA community. Through her leadership, DoT’s services are now delivered safely through more channels than ever before. Nina has introduced a culture of collaboration across Transport Services through leading by example.

She has a genuine interest in staff and supports her team and division through challenging times by being relatable and approachable to staff across all levels of organisation. Nina has positively influenced the DoT and the Transport portfolio through her strong leadership style in setting DoT’s values, championing innovation and change whilst maintaining the Organisation’s focus on customer experience.

Leader of the Year Working within a Division / Team / Organisation (2 Winners)

WINNER: Tracey Gillett
Regional Director, Kimberley – Department of Communities​

Ms Gillett is nominated for her unwavering commitment and outstanding leadership, management and stewardship of the diverse staff in leading the State reform agenda in the Kimberley to improve service outcomes to some of the most vulnerable people in the Western Australia.

Ms Gillett has built and sustained key stakeholder relationships via the establishment of a collaborative mechanisms being the District Leadership Groups (DLGs) in the East and West Kimberley regions. These forums have facilitated productive and genuine cross-sectoral partnerships in the region, providing the broader public sector with an improved platform to progress a collaborative reform agenda.

WINNER: Andrew Sanders
Director Risk and Resilience – Office of Emergency Management

Rapid demographic change and a changing climate is leading to a worsening of disasters like floods and bushfires. “Preparedness” has now become critical to better protect our vulnerable communities.

Since joining the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) in 2012, Andrew has been at the forefront of transforming our preparedness through his pioneering, emergency management (EM) work. As the OEM’s Director Risk and Resilience, Andrew and his team’s outputs have been recognised by the Commonwealth as the most advanced in Australia.

Key to this has been the year-on-year collation/analysis/interpretation of WA’s hazard risks and EM capabilities across government (involving approximately 200 agencies and 2500 personnel). Agencies are subsequently using this data (including over 2 million capability data points in 2017 alone) to improve state-wide preparedness.

The result: Andrew’s contemporary leadership across three OEM divisions is transforming WA to be better prepared for emergencies and disasters, creating safer and more resilient communities

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Amanda Steketee
Reporting Manager – Department of Communities

Leader of the Year in Local Government

WINNER: Garry Hunt PSM
Chief Executive officer –  City of Joondalup

Garry Hunt is widely regarded as one of the most experienced and successful Chief Executive Officers in the Australian Local Government sector having held executive positions in Local Government since 1977 including his current role as Chief Executive Officer of the City of Joondalup, and prior to this the City of Perth and City of Melville.

Garry was awarded a Public Service Medal in 1998 and in 2004 was awarded the Local Government Managers Australia (WA) Medal in recognition of his contribution to the local government profession

Since taking up the role of the Chief Executive Officer at the City of Joondalup, Garry has led a number of initiatives which demonstrate his commitment to excellence in public administration and management and resulting in the achievement of significant improvements in all aspects of its operations.

Public Sector Commission Young Leader of the Year

The winner of this award will have emerging leadership qualities; a thirst for knowledge and a commitment to learning. Making a difference by demonstrating best practice in the public service.

WINNER: Jay Peckitt
Executive Director Finance and Commercial Services – Department of Education

Jay Peckitt is currently the Executive Director Finance and Commercial Services and Chief Finance Officer at the Department of Education and has been the Department’s CFO for approximately two years.  Jay has been in the WA public sector for almost 15 years, commencing as a graduate accountant at the former Department for Community Development in February 2003.

Jay spent almost 10 years at that agency in a variety of roles. In 2012 Jay moved to the Department of Finance – Building Management and Works to take on the role of Director Financial and Contract Support. From January 2016, Jay joined the Department of Education as CFO (now Executive Director Finance and Commercial Services). As CFO of the largest public sector employer in the State, Jay leads a team of approximately 80 staff, managing a budget of $5 billion, distributed to educate over 302000 students in more than 800 schools.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Michael Moltoni
Director, Performance, Monitoring and Evaluation – Mental health Commission

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Shaun Whitmarsh
Executive Director, Strategy and Coordination – Department of Finance

Best Practitioner in the Public Service (4 Awards)

The winner of each of these awards will be working at manager level or higher. He/She will be a respected practitioner and demonstrate excellence in high achievement in their field of expertise.

Human Resource Management Practitioner of the Year

WINNER: Tom Hastings
Manager Organisational Performance – City of Gosnells

Tom has driven positive organisational change at the City of Gosnells which has provided the City with a leaner, more efficient structure and staff who are focused on a clear set of values which guide their actions.

Information Technology Practitioner of the Year

WINNER: Pat Scally
Chief Information Officer – Department of Communities

Using innovative practices and a focus on the Department of Communities’ purpose of working with others to create pathways that enable family and community wellbeing, Chief Information Officer Mr Pat Scally had led positive reform in a rapidly changing environment and has been integral to the new Department of Communities’ journey to integration and towards transformation.

Pat’s work in driving savings to fund innovation and use of those savings to fund new initiatives has contributed to building a sustainable funding model to enable the Department of Communities to better support the people it serves.

The operational improvements that Pat is making to streamline processes shows how technology has the power to enable staff to do their jobs more efficiently, smarter and better. Pat’s work will help staff spend more time with clients and less time behind their desks, focusing their efforts where they can have greatest effect.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Richard Burnell
Director Information and Communications Technology – Department of Fire and Emergency Services

Policy Practitioner of the Year

WINNER: Michelle Andrews
Deputy Director General – Department of the Premier and Cabinet

Michelle Andrews is Deputy Director General at the Department of the Premier and Cabinet, where she leads strategic policy and reform. Before joining DPC, Michelle headed the secretariat supporting the State Government’s Service Priority Review. The wide-ranging independent review examined the functions, operations and culture of the Western Australian public sector and provided a blueprint for reform to the Government.

Michelle is an environmental scientist with 30 years’ experience in the public sector, including as Deputy Director General of the former Department of Mines and Petroleum and with the Department of State Development and Environmental Protection Authority. She has also worked as a policy advisor for several State Government Ministers. Michelle has served as Deputy Chair of the Minerals Research Institute of Western Australia and is on the Board of the Western Australian Biodiversity Science Institute.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Stephanie Black
Executive Director, Government Procurement – Department of Finance

Department of Finance Award Finance Practitioner of the Year

WINNER: Nick Sarandopoulos
General Manager Finance and ICT – Pilbara Ports Authority​

Nick Sarandopoulos is the General Manager, Finance and ICT at Pilbara Ports Authority (PPA), a Government Trading Enterprise comprising the ports of Port Hedland, Dampier and Ashburton. The ports at Port Hedland and Dampier are two of the world’s largest bulk export ports, accounting for about 50 per cent of the world’s iron ore exports. PPA is a significant contributor to the State and national economies.

Nick is a qualified Chartered Accountant with 20 years’ experience in the financial management of large commercial operations.  He joined PPA in August 2014, shortly after the amalgamation of the Port Hedland and Dampier port authorities.

The amalgamation resulted in significant change management for the newly-created organisation. Nick played a key leadership role in unifying the Finance, ICT and Information Services teams. His strong guidance resulted in smooth integration of organisational culture, operating technologies, systems and procedures with minimal disruption to the business.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Georgina Camarda
Chief Finance Officer and Director of Business Services – Department of Fire and Emergency Services

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Liam Carren
Chief Financial Officer – Department of Communities

Business News Award Innovation in the Not-for-Profit Sector

The winning organisation of this award will demonstrate the implementation and use of innovative practices and approaches to meet community and public service objectives.

WINNER: Holyoake Institute
My Wellbeing Mate App

Holyoake’s vision is to ensure better futures for individuals, families and communities by providing a range of evidence-based programs and services.

Holyoake leverages innovation to respond more effectively to changing needs of society and to maximise social impact. The most recent example is the My Wellbeing App which was developed in collaboration with the Mining Emergency Response Competition (MERC) Community.

This free gateway app connects people to a range of reliable mental health resources such as helplines, websites, guides, self-checks, videos, talks, apps, and more. It features two main sections: ‘Self-Help’ & ‘Help Others’ and four sub-filters:

  1. Mental Health
  2. Family Support
  3. Aboriginal Health
  4. Emergency Responders

The app includes a ‘Favourites’ folder where individuals can save resources most relevant to them. Since its launch in November 2017, the app has exceeded expectations. Thousands of people have downloaded it and have responded favourably.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: JSW Training and Community Services
Bunbury Regional Community College

Best Practice in Collaboration (Gold, Silver and Bronze Winners)

The award will go to a project or an ongoing practice that demonstrates high level collaboration and coordination across organisations to meet a priority objective in the delivery of service to the community.

Best Practice in Collaboration Between Government and Non Government Organisations

GOLD WINNER: City of Cockburn, Fremantle Football Club, Curtin University
Cockburn Aquatic and Recreation Centre (ARC)

Cockburn Aquatic & Recreation Centre (Cockburn ARC) is the City of Cockburn’s $109 million, 23,000m², cutting edge, industry first, integrated aquatic, recreation, education and elite-athlete training facility for the community.

Developed in collaborative partnership with the Fremantle Football Club (FFC) and Curtin University, and leveraging funding support from the WA and Commonwealth governments, Cockburn ARC services a regional population of more than 207,000 people.

Opened in May 2017, visitor numbers have already exceeded year four projections of the feasibility study. Employing leading edge technology to engage the community, Cockburn ARC is fulfilling its mission to make “more people, more active, more often” to improve the health and wellbeing priority outcomes for its rapidly growing population.

SILVER WINNER: Department of Communities
Assisted Rental Pathways Pilot

Through the Assisted Rental Pathways Pilot, the Department of Communities partnered with four community services organisations to trial an innovative housing solution to divert people with capacity from social housing.

The pilot is strongly person-centred and outcomes-focused. Participants receive rental subsidies, which reduce over a four-year period, and individualised assistance to help them build their personal and financial capacity.

In its first full year of operation, the pilot has reduced reliance on welfare by empowering people to improve their circumstances and facilitating transition beyond social housing.

To date, 238 participants and their families have been housed (633 people total). All, bar one, have sustained their tenancy. 188 people have been diverted from the social housing waitlist and 49 social houses have been freed for people with greater need. 76% of participants have reported positive changes in circumstance, with 30% reporting improvements in employment status and 30% increased involvement in education/training.

BRONZE WINNER: Optus Stadium Project Team
Optus Stadium

Optus Stadium is a 60,000 seat (with the potential to increase to 70,000) multipurpose venue situated in Stadium Park, playing a fundamental role in attracting major world-class entertainment events to Perth. it is capable of hosting AFL, rugby union and league, football (soccer) and cricket as well as playing a fundamental role in attracting major world-class entertainment events to Perth.

The delivery of Optus Stadium and the surrounding Stadium Park was three months ahead of schedule and its success can be attributed to collaboration across
selected Government agencies through the “one-team approach” and the project’s strong Governance Framework. The Project’s successfully delivery three months ahead of schedule can also be attributed to the extensive engagement with nine User Groups, representing end users of the Stadium, the selection of the appropriate procurement model and harnessing a “one team” approach with the lead contractor on the project.

The Optus Stadium Project Team comprised representatives from three State Government agencies: the Department of Finance – Strategic Projects, the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries (the Division of Sport and Recreation), and VenuesWest.

Optus Stadium’s associated transport infrastructure was delivered by the Public Transport Authority (PTA) (Stadium train and bus stations) and Main Roads WA (MRWA) (the new Matagarup pedestrian bridge). Representatives from both Government agencies liaised directly with the Optus Stadium Project Team throughout the project.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Department of Education
Child and Parent Centres

Best Practice in Collaboration Across Government Agencies

WINNER: Optus Stadium Project Team
Optus Stadium

Optus Stadium is a 60,000 seat (with the potential to increase to 70,000) multipurpose venue situated in Stadium Park, playing a fundamental role in attracting major world-class entertainment events to Perth. it is capable of hosting AFL, rugby union and league, football (soccer) and cricket as well as playing a fundamental role in attracting major world-class entertainment events to Perth.

The delivery of Optus Stadium and the surrounding Stadium Park was three months ahead of schedule and its success can be attributed to collaboration across
selected Government agencies through the “one-team approach” and the project’s strong Governance Framework. The Project’s successfully delivery three months ahead of schedule can also be attributed to the extensive engagement with nine User Groups, representing end users of the Stadium, the selection of the appropriate procurement model and harnessing a “one team” approach with the lead contractor on the project.

The Optus Stadium Project Team comprised representatives from three State Government agencies: the Department of Finance – Strategic Projects, the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries (the Division of Sport and Recreation), and VenuesWest.

Optus Stadium’s associated transport infrastructure was delivered by the Public Transport Authority (PTA) (Stadium train and bus stations) and Main Roads WA (MRWA) (the new Matagarup pedestrian bridge). Representatives from both Government agencies liaised directly with the Optus Stadium Project Team throughout the project.

SPECIAL COMMENDATION: Department of Water and Environmental Regulation
2015-17 Light Industry Program

Organisation Demonstrating Best Practice

Excellence in demonstration and delivery of programs, policies and approaches in public values in corporate citizenry, social responsibility and welfare of staff are the two foci of this award. Organisations must demonstrate ongoing delivery and commitment in these areas.

Best Practice in Corporate Social Values

Department of Communities – Child Protection and Family Support
Kalgoorlie-Boulder Earlier Intervention and Family Support Service

The Kalgoorlie-Boulder Earlier Intervention and Family Support Service has been operational since May 2017.  Designed by the Goldfields District Leadership Group, the Service works both directly with families and in an agency collaboration and integration role with our town's most complex families.  In a way that sets aside service silos and mandate, the Service is achieving completely unexpected and incredible outcomes for families.

This service has been able to engage families, enable them to identify their needs and translate these into goals.  The service then either delivers the service or brokers it.  Less than a year into service delivery, key successes include 4 families who had been issued eviction notices, have had their evictions reversed and successfully maintained their tenancy; and 8 children have been returned to their families within 2 days of being removed by child protection with intensive in-home supports.  Innovative IT has been essential to program successes.

Department of Health Award Best Practice in Health and Wellbeing

WINNER: Department of Fire and Emergency Services
DFES Mental Health First Aid

DFES is committed to build an emergency services community that recognises and understands the importance of positive mental health in the workplace. DFES strongly values the contribution of its employees and volunteers and for this reason, it offers a variety of services and programs to help enhance and support the psychological and emotional resilience of its personnel including the implementation of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training.

DFES’ MHFA course is a two day, nationally accredited, evidence-based education program.  The course teaches people how to help a person who may be developing a mental health problem; experiencing a worsening of a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis.  Mental health issues covered in the course include depression, anxiety, psychosis and substance use problems.

Understanding mental illness and its impact is crucial when creating and maintaining a mentally healthy workplace.

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