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Australian Rural Leadership Program in Tasmania

24 February 2019

The Australian Rural Leadership Program (ARLP) Course 25 undertook their third session of the program in Tasmania on 9–15 February 2019. Immersing leaders within the complexities, opportunities and conversations of local leaders provided rich learning from the lived and living experience of communities and regions in Tasmania.

This was the third session of the ARLP, a 15-month leadership program that takes 30 leaders from across rural, regional and remote Australia through a learning experience to develop their capabilities, courage and connections.

Local ARLP alumni contributed to designing the session and Tasmania provided the setting, with rich history, diverse industries, engaged communities and a picturesque landscape.

During the program, the group heard the leadership stories from local alumni, along with industry and community leaders.

As much as the group were in awe of the beautiful architecture, landscape and people of Tasmania, it was the experiences and connections which made the session truly unique.

The stories shared within this diverse group of people with local leaders, exemplified how truly unique this program is. They shared their stories about living in the outback, their varied experiences as leaders, the similarities with locals, along with the challenges and opportunities in their industries and communities.

The group engaged in healthy discussions about Indigenous Australian affairs, water policy, colonisation and its impact, drought and disaster relief, and the social implications of living remotely. Their conversations with local alumni and amongst themselves delved into political aspirations, economic opportunities, natural resource management and a new vision for Australian education.

The group spent time in Hobart and Launceston, as well as other regional locations including Orford, Sanford, Dunalley, Tunbridge, Evandale, Deloraine and Rosevears.

The passion and determination of these 30 leaders is remarkable. Together they are developing each other through honesty in a supportive environment. They are learning through being exposed to a diversity of opinions and backgrounds, that would otherwise not be possible.

Their discussions and debates were triggered through the various experiences in Tasmania and the stories from local leaders. From here, they cannot help but become more informed and courageous leaders with a greater understanding of themselves and others.

It truly is the connections within the cohort through these valuable experiences which is the legacy of the program.

Sponsors of the program invest in the development of people who will not only continue to lead in their organisation, industry, and community; but invest in people who will contribute to the physical, social, economic and cultural fabric of regional Australia.

“Tasmania has a unique environment that supports innovative and outcome driven leaders – spending time with these leaders inspired valuable conversations allowing us to grow and adapt our understanding of leadership in context,” said Dan Brown, sponsored by NSW Local Land Services.

“The Tasmanian session of the ARLP was amazing for many reasons. There were so many opportunities to be exposed to small, medium and large businesses and the challenges they face, and hearing about how they overcame them. The ARLP allows for new experiences and the exposure to grow as a leader, not only in our current field, but also in the wider community.  It really is an opportunity to say ‘yes’ and figure out how, in a safe space, where others support and assist in our growth,” said Karen Demmery, sponsored by Australian Government Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The cohort will travel to Indonesia for the international session in May 2019 before graduating from the program in October 2019 in Canberra.

More information

For information about the ARLP, see Australian Rural Leadership Program.