I sincerely hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year break and if you have family and friends in fire impacted areas I am hopeful they are all ok.

A break, and this one in particular, gives us all time to reflect on the year just gone and what made it significant. 

For me, it was definitely the collaborative nature of the projects and outcomes achieved and being able to make a difference in the wonderful place that we all live and work. 

It is very different living and working in a regional area like the Northern Rivers from being in metropolitan areas. It is not unusual here to bump into work associates on the side of the field at the kid’s weekend soccer game or to be found at your worst (visually) in an aisle of Bunnings with paint in your hair and on your old jeans. 

And for me there is never a quick trip to the farmers markets, or shops in general, as there is always a conversation to be had with a business owner asking about economic development initiatives and advocacy, employee relations challenges or business support in general.

I love it and I love the people in this region and the opportunity to be part of something that can improve our lives and those we are connected to. So thank you for being part of that.

Keeping connected and informed

When times are tough it is important for us to be there for each other and to share information that might help others no matter how small or big that knowledge might be. 

The NSW Business Chamber is often an intermediary between industry and government as we have very deep and trusted relationships and well used networks to distribute information and also gather knowledge quickly and clearly present it to support business.

For a quick link to bushfire recovery support the most up to date information, click here.

We are also very keen to hear from you if there is an area of concern relating to bushfire recovery where we can feed this into meetings with relevant authorities for you. 

What we often find is an issue is being felt by many and by presenting it in a united way we get faster action.

Go ahead and get ahead

Early conversations with local businesses as we have come into 2020 reflect a desire for us to ‘go ahead and get ahead’ in the Northern Rivers. 

Meaning, yes it has been a tough 12 months with election leadership uncertainty, drought and then fires but we must pick up and make the most of what we have because we still have a lot of opportunity for business success and job creation in this region.

I would like to take up this challenge and work in collaboration with you to turn the tide in 2020 and make it a year of progress and outcomes for regional economic development and employment growth. 

Please do connect and let me know your thoughts about how we can work together.

Welcome Rebecca Watling

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce our new NSW Business Chamber Regional Coordinator, Rebecca Watling who commenced with us in early January.

Rebecca has extensive administration, events and marketing experience having completed eight years in a business events role with Alice Springs Convention Centre before recently returning to her home town of Ballina. 

We welcome Rebecca’s passion for business and regional development and I am overjoyed to have her working with me and part of the Northern Rivers NSW Business Chamber team. 

Rebecca is in our 2/52 Tamar Street office in Ballina (Tue-Fri), her direct line is 5631 8509 and email rebecca.watling@nswbc.com.au

Yours in business,


Jane Laverty – Regional Manager Northern Rivers, NSW Business Chamber