Winner of the Award – Therese Manns, Broken Hill City Council
Therese is the General Manager at Broken Hill City Council. During 2014, she led a significant change process at Council in order to move it towards sustainability, primarily in response to a Treasury Corporation assessment that showed that the Council had a ‘very weak’ financial status.
In 12 months, ongoing annual savings of over $3.5 million (or nearly 11.8% of total revenue) have been generated through a series of strategies and actions that required exceptional strength of leadership.
Therese has taken a consultative approach, informing and educating Council, the community and staff about the need for change, and ensuring a path for progress towards sustainability. She helps people to envision the future, and to understand how changes made can achieve that future.
Therese has made hard decisions (including the loss of approximately 15% of the workforce), but developed innovative ways of approaching challenges and introducing future-focused projects, such as a new urban design project for the CBD.
As part of the workforce review and restructure, Therese initiated a development opportunity (secondment) for two up and coming local government professional women to assist her in implementing the change process. An asset manager from Lake Macquarie and a finance manager from Gosford took on the challenge, who have now advanced further in their chosen fields.