It is with sadness and optimism, I sit down to write my final Devil’s Advocate report as Chair of FCRC.I have decided the time has come to hand over the reins to a new Chair and I do so with utmost confidence we will find a person with amazing skills, knowledge and passion to contribute to our organisation.
As I reflect on the past 4 years, I am proud of the significant work of our Board members (past and present) and in particular the unsung heroes who deliver way beyond the capacity of our organisation, our Executive Officer, Dr Sandy Ross, our former Executive Officer, Peter Gartlan and the friendly and talented staff at FCRC. I would particularly like to thank James for going above and beyond in his availability and support to me during my term as Chair.
I also hope I have shown it is possible for an introvert and someone terrified of public speaking to have a voice and make a difference. I believe we have many voices that we need to hear from in our membership, particularly from those who see the broader landscape and are passionate in contributing positively to effecting change for our clients. I would encourage you all to believe you can step up and make a difference.
Over my time as Chair I have witnessed many changes: a change of Executive Officer; changes in Board members; and most proudly building and strengthening relationships with funding bodies and external stakeholders. There are new financial counselling positions specialising in Family Violence, and there has been continued work towards professionalism of financial counselling, and opportunities for our sector to grow through recognition of the important role financial counsellors play in many service delivery areas.
I have also experienced many personal challenges during this time and look forward to the time to focus on my children as they grow into young adults.
Finally, I would like to thank the current Board: Colin Harte, Mark Phillips, Norm McMurray, Cathy Clark, Heather Barclay, Max Smart, Joanne McMahon-Hide, and Carly Baker for their significant contribution to the governance of FCRC over the past 12 months. I also remember with fondness, as I sign off, the person who encouraged and had confidence in me in standing for the position of Treasurer of the Board when I first nominated; a great man, friend and colleague who will always be missed, Tony Naughton.