Leaders Connect

A word from the CEO

I hope this edition of Leaders Connect finds you happy and well. October has been an exciting month at
LG Professionals SA.

I’m pleased to share that LG Professionals SA were successful in our recent application for LGA R and D funding, to progress the Workforce and Gender Equity in SA Local Government project. The project will assess and address systemic drivers of gender inequality in SA Local Government through centralised collection and management of workforce data, with collected data informing the development of initiatives to achieve improved gender diversity and equality in employment in the sector workforce. I look forward to keeping you updated as this project progresses.

As a membership organisation, we work hard to create a range of meaningful opportunities for our members. One of the many benefits of LG Professionals SA membership is the opportunity to raise your profile - I encourage you to put yourself forward for one (or more) of the below opportunities:

  • Vote for your new LG Professionals SA Board. Ballot information has been emailed to all Members - if you haven’t received please let me know via executive@lgprofessionalssa.org.au – voting closes at 5pm on Wednesday 1 November
  • Register to attend our AGM – to be held on Thursday 9 November 2023 - and stay on for a valuable networking opportunity afterwards
  • Register for our Economic Development Conference – to be held on Friday 10 November 2023 – an important event not to be missed – see below for a link to the carefully curated program
  • Nominate to represent LG Professionals SA on a Network Committee – a call for nominations is currently open for our Women's Network, Business Performance and Improvement Network and People and Culture Network Committees
  • Register for one of our Leadership Programs – Ignite Program, Strategic Management Program or Executive Leaders Program
  • Register for our Navigating your Life Journey and Road to Retirement session – suitable for all career stages

Of course, if you have any questions at all about any of the above please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Finally, thank you so much to all of you who completed our recent survey around topics you’d like to see covered at the LG Professionals SA 2024 Annual State Conference – we received so much valuable feedback which has been invaluable in curating the event program - keep an eye on your inbox soon!

Best wishes in the rush to the end of the year.


October 2023
Edition 145



Please save the date for the following LG Professionals SA events for 2023/24. If you are planning a local government event, we invite you to contact us to avoid date clashes. 

Friday 22 March 2024 - LG Professionals SA Annual State Conference

Friday 10 May 2024 - LG Professionals SA 23rd Annual Leadership Excellence Awards Gala Dinner

Thursday 9 November 2023

LG Professionals SA Members are invited to the 2023 Annual General Meeting to be held on Thursday 9 November 2023. 

Please RSVP to attend below as a show of support for your Association

Register now


The LG Professionals SA Rural Management Challenge was held on Thursday 19 October at The Terrace Hotel. This year we had a record 13 teams from councils across regional South Australia who threw themselves into the day and everything it had to offer. To their credit, all teams demonstrated great spirit, camaraderie and innovative thinking at every turn.

Congratulations to the 2023 Rural Management Challenge Winner - Adelaide Plains Council - APC All Stars

Second Place: City of Victor Harbor - Pultang Miwi

Third Place: District Council of Loxton Waikerie - The Itty Bitty City Committee

Thank you to all of the volunteers who helped make the Rural Challenge a fantastic day - we are so appreciative of your support.

We were so pleased to be able to provide this professional development opportunity, tailored to our regional councils. Congratulations to all teams.

Adelaide Plains Council - APC All Stars (L to R)
Josh Banks (Mentor), Nathan Emes, George Jacks, Amy Fagan and Clarisse Semler-Hanlon

The LG Professionals SA Annual Leadership Excellence Awards Program recognises outstanding achievement and innovation in local government. Nominations are now open for the 
23rd Annual Leadership Excellence Awards, and member organisations are encouraged to prepare their nominations in the following categories:

  • Emerging Leader of the Year
  • Excellence in People and Culture
  • Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion
  • Excellence in Community Partnerships and Collaboration
  • Excellence in Cross Council Collaboration
  • Excellence in Local Economic Development
  • Excellence in Customer Service or Experience
  • Excellence in Community Services and Development
  • Excellence in Environmental Leadership and Sustainability
  • Excellence in Emergency Management / Disaster Recovery
  • Excellence in Infrastructure Delivery 
Find out more

Leadership Excellence Awards Information Session - How to Nominate

Nominating for a Leadership Excellence Award is a rewarding process, providing you the valuable opportunity to reflect on your achievements. We understand that pulling together a nomination can seem daunting – but ultimately it's about telling the story of your project or initiative.  

LG Professionals SA are here to support you. Please join our information session to find out more about the awards nomination and judging process. If you are considering nominating for the awards or would like to learn more, we invite you to attend this free information webinar.

Date: Thursday 16 November 2023
Time: 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Format: Zoom Webinar

Register now

Registrations close Monday 19 February 2024

The Australasian Management Challenge has been at the forefront of professional development in local government in Australia and New Zealand for more than 30 years. The Management Challenge is a simulation-based team building, learning and networking program using real local government themes - the types of issues that a senior management team in a council would most likely face.

The Management Challenge provides an excellent professional development opportunity to become more effective in leading, thinking, communicating, negotiating, decision-making, analysing and engaging.

Please note: The 2024 Management Challenge date has been scheduled earlier in the year in 2024. We encourage you to start organising your teams and preparation as soon as possible. 

Find out more


Respected and widely recognised within and outside of the sector, our Leadership Excellence Awards Program began in 2001 and celebrates outstanding achievements
and innovation in local government. The awards showcase the level of expertise and excellence in our sector and is an opportunity exclusive to Members only.

Learn more about what LG Professionals SA Membership offers you. 

Find out more


Welcome to our 108 new members! Click here to see the list.

We look forward to providing support and professional development and networking opportunities through every stage of your local government career.

Member Profile - 
Proudly sponsored by


Thomas Harris-Howson

This month we spoke with Thomas Harris-Howson, Senior Information Technology Officer at Adelaide Plains Council, about his role, professional development and what's next for him. 

How long have you been in local government and what is your role?

I have had the joy of working in Information Technology in local government for just about 8 years, having worked in roles at both Light Regional Council, as a Support Officer (yes, I was one of the people asking if you had “turned your computer on and off again”) in 2015, and working my way up into my current role as Senior Information Technology Officer at the Adelaide Plains Council since 2017. Read more...


Friday 10 November 2023

Time is running out to register for the 2023 LG Professionals SA Economic Development Conference, 'Future Prosperity: Growing Local Economies'. View full program here.

The LG Professionals SA Economic Development Conference is the only economic development event in SA focussed solely on the needs of the local government sector. Our Economic Development Conference provides a forum for showcasing best practice, networking, collaboration and the sharing of ideas, across both rural and metro councils.

All local government professionals with an interest in, and responsibility for, the economic direction of their councils are encouraged to attend.

Find out more

Friday 10 November 2023

Explore project leadership and learn how to manage some of the challenges faced when managing big projects in a local government context.

Suitable for staff who have experience with managing projects.

Facilitated by Lisa Twyford
Lisa is a highly motivated professional with extensive business improvement and project management experience. Her passion for these areas equips her with the expertise to deliver both the Introduction to Project Management and Advanced Project Management short courses. These courses sell out very quickly and feedback received is always excellent.

Register now


Monday 20 November 2023

Whether your retirement is approaching or is in the distant future, there are a few important things to consider to help enjoy a quality lifestyle now and to plan for the retirement you are working towards.

Suitable for anyone who is keen to set goals and work towards a balanced lifestyle now and into their retirement. 

Facilitated by Rick Mason
Rick is passionate about assisting people to work with their values to achieve personal, retirement and business goals. He has worked extensively with people from all walks of life, in the capacity of coach, career transition counsellor, personal coach/counsellor, group worker and trainer.

You will also have the opportunity to explore superannuation with Hostplus. Find out more about the retirement journey and strategies to maximise super leading up to and during retirement. You will explore building up your retirement nest egg, transition to retirement, options to meet your income needs in retirement, including the Age Pension, and protecting your wealth.

Register now

Thursday 16 November 2023

Calling all women in local government - you're invited to the upcoming 
LG Professionals SA and Hostplus: Women and Super webinar, to be held on Thursday 16 November 2023. We'll be joined by Lisa Palmer, Executive Manager, Intermediary Distribution from Hostplus.

Learn how to be financially fit as a woman, including tips, strategies and secrets to building a bright financial future. This session will provide you with great insights for your own financial fitness or tips you can share with others.

Register now


Hostplus is proud to be named the 2023 SuperRatings’ Fund of the Year.

The award is judged across six categories: 

  • strong performance
  • competitive fees
  • insurance
  • administration
  • governance
  • an ongoing focus on member services.

That’s a plus.

Issued by Host-Plus Pty Limited ABN 79 008 634 704, AFSL 244392 as trustee for the Hostplus Superannuation Fund (the Fund) ABN 68 657 495 890, MySuper No 68 657 495 890 198.

This information is general advice only and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider if this information is appropriate for you in light of your circumstances before acting on it. Please read the relevant Hostplus Product Disclosure Statement (PDS), available at hostplus.com.au before making a decision about Hostplus. For a description of the target market, please read the Target Market Determination (TMD), available at hostplus.com.au.​​​​​​

Visit lonsec.com.au/logo-disclosure for the full SuperRatings disclosure. Go to lonsec.com.au/super-fund/ratings-and-awards/ for rating and award criteria. General advice only. Consider the relevant Hostplus PDS and TMD at hostplus.com.au and your objectives, financial situation and needs, which have not been accounted for.  Awards and ratings are only one factor to consider. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Host-Plus Pty Limited ABN 79 008 634 704, AFSL 244392 trustee for Hostplus Superannuation Fund, ABN 68 657 495 890.

Find out more about our award-winning fund


Friday 17 November 2023

We’re thrilled to announce our first ever joint forum between the LG Professionals SA General Managers and Directors Network and the LG Professionals SA People and Culture Network. Together, we’ll explore the important topic of Innovation in Recruitment, sharing practical and implementable solutions for attracting and recruiting talented staff.

This forum will be held in person and via Zoom on Friday 17 November 2023 from
1:15 PM - 4:30 PM at Perks People Solutions, 8/81 Flinders Street, Adelaide followed by
a pay-your-own-way networking drinks nearby. 

Register now

Thursday 23 November 2023

Join us as we welcome Paul Sutton, Mark Withers, Martin Borgas and Judith Lowe as guest speakers for the LG Professionals SA Business Performance and Improvement Network Forum: Collaboration - Why is it so hard? Our guest speakers will be sharing insights into their collaboration efforts, including what worked, what didn't and lessons learned from their experiences.

This Forum will be held in person and via Zoom on Thursday 23 November 2023 from
9:15 AM - 12:15 PM at Weigall Oval, Oval Terrace, Plympton. 

Register now


Program Commences February 2024

The 12-month program, spanning 13 program days plus an orientation session, is designed to enable those who have limited experience in managing and leading people to develop the competencies to set them up for success in their role. Upon successful completion of this program, graduates will receive the nationally recognised qualification Certificate IV in Leadership and Management.

The Ignite Program is special because each cohort regularly reflects and debriefs on the local government challenges and opportunities they face, sharing strategies which have been successful or otherwise - all in the spirit of learning. Case studies, assessments and conversations are all tailored to our unique sector.

If you're interested in learning more about the Ignite Program please register to attend our information session to be held on Wednesday 1 November 2023. Click here to register.

Find out more

Program Commences February 2024

Developed in partnership with UniSA and local government experts, the Strategic Management Program has been designed to build high-level leadership and management skills within a local government context. Participants will develop technical skills to manage business functions, enhancing innovation, strategic thinking, business acumen and operational excellence.

This interactive program will be delivered in a hybrid format in 2024, with some modules delivered face to face and some via live virtual classroom.

If you'd like a copy of the recording of the Strategic Management Program Information Session held on Monday 23 October 2023, please email Eve Jackson, Training Support Officer at eve@lgprofessionalssa.org.au.

Find out more

Program Commences February 2024

Leadership in the local government sector comes with its own unique set of evolving challenges for executives. The COVID ‘reset’ combined with new services, skills and technologies have fundamentally changed expectations of the delivery of public services. With the ever-growing question of ‘what role will local government play both now and into the future?’, there has never been a more important time to explore a new paradigm of leadership and inspire your thinking about the future.

The Executive Leaders Program will expand your thinking about change, navigating the political environment, innovation and yourself.

If you'd like a copy of the recording of the Executive Leaders Program Information Session held on Tuesday 31 October 2023, please email Eve Jackson, Training Support Officer at eve@lgprofessionalssa.org.au. 

Find out more

We caught up with one of this year's Emerging Leaders Program participants, Meegan Barrett, Team Leader Library and Volunteers at City of Burnside to find out how she is enjoying the program so far. 

What made you sign up for the Emerging Leaders Program?

I’ve been in my current Team Leader role for over four years, and with the City of Burnside for 20 years this year. I seek out opportunities to learn more about myself and my role as a leader in the organisation. The program offered the balance of theory along with practical applications which appealed to me. While it had been more than 30 years since I was last at Uni, the thought of pushing myself out of my comfort zone was another reason I signed up.

A recent module focused on 'leading through change’ – what were some of your takeaways from this module?

The module on change was a day that went by too quickly! The day focussed on setting expectations, drivers for change, internal and external pressures and communication. The takeaways were many and included the practices of active listening and leading by example. We were all encouraged to embed our learnings into our everyday life within the first 24 hours by practicing active listening with our colleagues.

What are you most looking forward to as the program progresses?

The networking opportunities and relationships I have built have been my biggest takeaways at this point. I have met and connected with people from different councils from all over South Australia. I look forward to leveraging these connections in my role as a leader. I am also looking forward to celebrating the successful completion of our projects with the rest of the wonderful group.


Meegan Barrett
Team Leader Library and Volunteers
City of Burnside

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Network News

LG Professionals SA Members are invited to join one of our many Networks.

Networks are groups of professionals who share a common interest or experience. We run a comprehensive range of Network meetings and forums throughout the year, offering staff the opportunity to learn and develop whilst sharing and networking with peers from their own and other councils and subsidiaries, across the state.

Our Networks include:

Join a Network today

If you would like to know more about our Network offerings, or have a suggestion for a new Network, please contact Haylie Maynard, Membership and Networks Officer at haylie@lgprofessionalssa.org.au.


Are you interested in joining a LG Professionals SA Network Committee? We are pleased to advise that the Call for Nominations are now open for a range of Networks.

Develop your leadership skills and share with colleagues through participation in one of the LG Professionals SA Network Committees. Each Committee is supported by a Chair and Vice Chair and Committee Members have the opportunity to help shape the annual calendar of offerings for their respective Network whilst fostering positive and longstanding relationships with peers.

Members of LG Professionals SA have exclusive access to these Networks and, once a year, have the opportunity to nominate to join one of their Committees. The following Networks are calling for nominations for their respective Committees:

LG Professionals SA Sponsorship and Corporate Partnership

Do you work for or know an organisation who would be interested in gaining exposure to local government professionals through sponsorship with LG Professionals SA? 

As a not-for-profit association, LG Professionals SA rely on the support of sponsors to be able to continue to deliver the range of high quality events and professional development programs that we are known for.

Partnering with sponsors also creates opportunities for our members to learn, build relationships and receive best value.

Please contact Megan Down for further details on corporate partnership opportunities.


The Norman Waterhouse Human Resources Masterclass is back in 2023!
Join us for a full-day workshop where we will develop and refine your technical and soft skills as HR professionals through practical, engaging and challenging factual scenarios.

Register now

About Local Government Professionals Australia, SA

LG Professionals SA is a not-for-profit member based association representing professionals working in local government in South Australia. 

We have the ability to link and connect people from different councils who may not otherwise form relationships or share. 

Our high quality professional development programs and networking events are uniquely local government – reflective of the culture of the sector and sensitive to the needs of its professionals. 

The content of our events and programs are informed by our members and people who genuinely care about the sector. 

We provide a safe and supportive environment in which to grow and learn while creating opportunities to make time away from the office to work on the business or on self. 

We award and acknowledge achievements of excellence.

We are proud to be part of a national Federation of State based Local Government Professionals Australia organisations, supported by a national office dedicated to supporting the National Local Government sector.

LG Professionals SA  I 148 Frome Street, Adelaide SA 5000  I  Phone: 08 8224 2080

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