Neil Black, SBRC CEO Mark Pitt, Jason Kinsella, Gloria Kirkness, Elaine Raffin, David Kenny, Carolyn Stone, Julie Thomson and South Burnett Mayor Brett Otto gathered for a group photo after Visit South Burnett’s AGM at the Kingaroy Town Hall Supper Room last week

December 8, 2020

The South Burnett’s new Tourism Development Officer will not be appointed until early next year.

Visit South Burnett (VSB) president Jason Kinsella told the group’s Annual General Meeting last week that after an exhaustive selection process, the winning applicant for the position had been forced to withdraw at the last minute due to family commitments.

While VSB’s executive were sorry to lose such a good candidate, they accepted the decision.

The group will now restart the recruitment process, and hope to be able to announce a successful appointee early next year.

The AGM was held in Kingaroy Town Hall’s Supper Room and was attended by about 40 local tourism operators, along with South Burnett Mayor Brett Otto, Council CEO Mark Pitt, and several councillors.

In his President’s report, Jason said that despite the hiccup with the Tourism Development Officer, the past year had seen the organisation make great strides forward.

VSB had grown to more than 90 financial members; the group’s bank account had expanded to more than $80,000; and the easing of pandemic restrictions had seen tourist numbers increase substantially during the past quarter.

In the year ahead, VSB aimed to use research data gathered by the Southern Queensland Country Regional Tourism Organisation to tap into key visitor markets more effectively and continue to drive more tourists into the South Burnett.

During the meeting, elections were held for the group’s 2021 executive positions.

The results were:

  • President – Jason Kinsella (Moffatdale Ridge Wines)
  • Secretary – Elaine Raffin (Wondai Electrical Services)
  • Treasurer – Gloria Kirkness (Nanango Tourism and Development Association)
  • Host Farm Representative – Carolyn Stone (Passchendaele Farmstay)
  • Agricultural Tourism Representative – Mandy Evans (Bunya Red Farm)
  • Restaurant and Food Representative – Neil Black (Pioneer Lodge Motel)
  • Events Representative – David Kenny (Nanango Cycling Inc)
  • Accommodation Representative – Julie Thomson (Kingaroy Country Motel)
  • Attractions Representative – Gloria Kirkness (Nanango Tourism and Development Association)

Mayor Otto congratulated the new executive and said Council had every confidence the group would deliver positive tourism outcomes in the year ahead.

He said there were “good signs on the horizon” for regional tourism.

Because the South Burnett was “two and a half hours from everywhere” in south-east Queensland, he felt the region was well placed to capitalise on them.

The Mayor said Council had plans to continue to develop Yallakool and Lake Boondooma to grow tourist numbers at both facilities, and saw the Bunya Mountains as another potent drawcard for visitors.

He shared VSB’s confidence the group would do bigger and better things in the future.

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