The Ipswich Chamber of Commerce & Industry board is committed to effectively representing our vibrant business community and to providing opportunities for our members to benefit from our collective experience.



Phillip Bell

Senior Vice President
Marie Kavanagh
Cameron McKenzie

Junior Vice President
Cameron McKenzie
Australian Property Lawyers

Rebecca O'Connell,
Bendigo Bank
Anita Dwyer
Immediate Past
Anita Dwyer
Community Engagement

General Board Member
Roger Gorrel,
The Qld Times

General Board Member
Steve Harling
Ipswich Turf Club

General Board Member
Rachel Vickary
Ipswich City Square

General Board Member
Pushpa Bakshi
ACTE Pty Ltd
Cathryn (Nel) Warburton
General Board Member
Cathryn Warburton
Acacia Law


Board Member
Pushpa Bakshi
Board Member
Pushpa Bakshi
Cathryn (Nel) Warburton

Brett Kitching is a proud fifth generation Ipswichian from a line of United Kingdom immigrants to Ipswich in the 19th Century. Brett married Annette in 1988 and they have three children – Alex (born 1990), Ondreea (1992), and Ellen (1994).

Raised at Ebbw Vale and educated at Bundamba Primary and Bundamba High Schools, Brett moved to Townsville from 1981 to 1983 for sporting reasons and to attend James Cook University from which a Bachelor of Commerce degree was attained.

In 1990 Brett completed the Australian Society of Accountants CPA (Certified Practising Accountant) examinations and has held the CPA designation since that time.

Most of Brett's employment has been in Ipswich including a 12 year term with CSR Wood Panels at Bundamba as firstly cost accountant then rising to Site General Manager, and finally Group Commercial Manager. Other positions have included four years at Bartter Steggles at Wulkuraka as Queensland Finance Manager and the current role as General Manager at the Ipswich Turf Club held since 2004.

Whilst employed full time Brett and Annette also operated small businesses including a tax agency for three years in the 1980s, owner/operators of the Redbank Plains Health and Fitness Centre for five years in the 1990s, and a thoroughbred horse stud for five years around the turn of the millennium.

This long history in Ipswich brings an understanding of the fabric of Ipswich as well as a desire to see the City continue to prosper and develop. Brett's belief is that networking and promotion of businesses through the Chamber is an important aid in continuing the development of Ipswich.

Kevin is currently the Branch Manager at Bendigo Bank Brassall. He is a results-oriented lending professional and sales manager with over 20 years’ experience at major Australian lending firms. He is a seasoned professional whose honesty and integrity provide for effective leadership and optimal business relationships.

Kevin has outstanding management skills with particular expertise in residential and small business lending. With over 10 years’ experience recruiting, team building and project management with special skills in mentoring and directing sales staff in a challenging fast-paced sales environment.

He is a flexible team player that thrives in environments requiring ability to prioritise and juggle concurrent projects, and that excels at building trusting relationships with customers and colleagues.

Janine has lived in the Ipswich area for 16yrs, & for the past 9, has been joint MD of Spencer Burford Group, a manufacturing/import business with an office in Pine Mountain, employing 6 local staff, and a warehousing facility in Brassall. She works with over 20 factories in China & Taiwan, importing to Australia & exporting to NZ and throughout the Asia Pacific.

Janine brings a wealth of business experience to the 2015 board with over 27 years in small business management. As well as her manufacturing & import background, Janine has been the general manager of a retail centre, the regional manager of 5 job centres, has run an accommodation bureau, published academic textbooks, and worked as a marketer for a national bank.

Marie and her husband Peter have lived, worked, and invested in Ipswich since the 1970s. Marie began her career in secondary schools as a business teacher and Head of Business. After completing further studies she worked as an accountant before returning to the educational arena as a lecturer in Accounting and Business at the University of Queensland.

Skills and Areas of Expertise appropriate to Board membership: National and International Profile in education, particularly accounting and business education; Financial Management; Risk and Compliance; Strong Reputation for Community Engagement; Previous Experience as a Board member on three organizational boards where she chaired relevant board committees.

Marie has been successful in obtaining funding for and leading several large federally funded projects. For example: Business Education in the 21st Century and BEAMS (Building Engagement and Aspiration through Mentoring in Schools) a project that uses peer mentoring to assist young people from low SES backgrounds in the region to aspire to further education, training and employment. Since 2006 Marie has been the Australian Chair of the Accounting Education Special Interest Group for the Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand (AFAANZ), and Northern Region Program Director for Enactus Australia. Enactus (Entrepreneurship and Action through US) places university students into their communities to deliver entrepreneurial projects of benefit to businesses and community organisations. She started the Student Chamber of Commerce with Springfield Chamber of Commerce and is keen to do the same with the Ipswich Chamber.

Rachel is the current marketing Manager of Ipswich City Square, Inala Plaza and Niecon Plaza. Her previous roles were with Revlon Australia as there Qld State Training and Events Manager, Nuchem Management as the Group Beauty Coordinator/Marketing and News Limited as a Journalist and stylist.

Rachel has been involved in many community projects within the CBD including creating and launching the Kitch in the Swich Vintage and Rockabilly Fiesta, Carnaby Square Entertainment Festival. High school work experience programs, Activate Ipswich program and is a forum member of Ipswich beyond 2020.

Alison has an impressive ability to marry business success with an overwhelming commitment to community. As a prominent Ipswich businesswoman, Alison is the CEO of Human Resource Solutions (Aust.) Pty Ltd.

Alison possesses strong business acumen and a sheer determination to achieve awesome results. She has the ability to influence at various management levels and with all types of people. Her team refers to her as positive and upbeat and maintaining an energy even when faced with the most difficult situations.

As a recruiter Alison uses a business centric approach – she is a strategic thinker who not only adopts a carefully planned and executed recruitment and selection process but pays particular attention to where your organisation wants to be and how she may be able to add value to your organisation. Her experience and focus is in senior and middle management placements across many sectors including accounting, finance, not for profits, aged care, manufacturing, warehousing, logistics and education.

Born and educated in Ipswich, Alison believes in ongoing personal and professional development for not only her 'team' but also herself. Alison is the proud mother of two successful adult children, Travis and Belinda.

Alison maintains a strong commitment to community and to helping the lives of others. She is an active member of the local community, holding a position on the Executive of Ipswich Women’s Development, the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce and the Business Enterprise Centre (Ipswich region). She is a past President of the Zonta Club of West Moreton and still is active in this group along with an active member of Business Chicks, nationally. Alison is also a strong supporter and organiser of many other community activities and fundraising efforts, including Ladies Charity Race Day held annually each March for Ipswich Hospice. She actively assists in fundraising for Kids Helpline and Sunrise Children’s Orphanage in Cambodia.

Alison can be found most weekends/evenings/early mornings - jogging, road cycling, gym work outs or hanging out with family/friends. 'I love dining out, good wine and shopping!'

Giving to others is of utmost importance to Alison - both financially and in time. "Giving is part of the DNA of Human Resource Solutions (Aust.)" and a part of who I am.

Michael Munt, Managing Director of BIZTOPIA business IT specialists, and 2007 Chamber of Commerce Young Business Person of the Year, established his business in 1997.

BIZTOPIA has grown to employ 7 staff (all Ipswich residents) and maintain a client base spread over much of Queensland. BIZTOPIA continues to develop IT related products and services designed with businesses in mind and to keep pace with the changing needs of modern business - including providing clients with fast, secure data storage and access from anywhere, at anytime.

The first 10 years have laid a solid foundation for BIZTOPIA and has shown that Information Technology services based on ethics, values and that are aligned with business goals will be embraced by the business community at large.

Michael is pleased to contribute to the wider business community by supporting local businesses and via his involvement in the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce & Industry as a dedicated sponsor and supporter.

"Community, integrity, and building productive and supportive partnerships through an innovative and solution oriented approach - these values form the foundation of Sammut Bulow."

As founding partner of Sammut Bulow in 1998, Martin Sammut has a wealth of accounting industry experiences as well as dual degrees in Commerce and Economics.

Sammut Bulow is recognised as one of the city's most progressive accountancy firms.

Investing in the community is an important part of Sammut Bulow's approach and is why Martin plays an active role in the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce & Industry and other community organisations.

"I've benefitted from this community and now it's my turn to give something back. This involves supporting local organisations, drawing the best local accounting and business talent to our business, and putting my own investment dollars into the region."

Martin has won the highly prized Ipswich Chamber of Commerce and Industry "Young Business Person of the Year" and the University of Queensland "Young Alumnus of the Year" Awards.

Matthew Allison, having been born and educated in Ipswich, is a well-known member of the Ipswich Business community. Matthew is also a husband and father to three young children.

Having attended Ipswich Grammar School, Matthew completed his Bachelor Electronic Commerce at UQ Ipswich and is also a member of the Institute of Charted Accountants. Matthew's experience stems from having worked in both the public practice and commercial environment.

He has worked for local accounting firms and was the CFO of the Friendly Care Pharmacy group throughout Ipswich, Brisbane, Gold Coast & North Queensland.

Matthew has held the position of Treasurer/Secretary with The Ipswich Chamber of Commerce for the last 4 years and currently works for Exact Radiology as their Financial Controller.

By studying the nature of any business closely, Andrew Spark is able to create unique advertising and marketing strategies which are a true reflection of the client's business image and strategic goals.

With over 22 years experience in the Ipswich market, Andrew Spark has assisted many established and start-up businesses, across a variety of industry sectors, in developing effective advertising, marketing and branding initiatives geared toward business growth and future prosperity.

Andrew Spark specialises in assisting small companies with limited advertising budgets and has a reputation for identifying and targeting sales messages to his client's prime prospects which are clear and concise. To facilitate this, he utilises both new and traditional media, constantly updating his education in trends and development. In this way Andrew's clients invest their money in all the right places.

He believes the symbiotic relationship he maintains with his clients in turn creates a ripple effect throughout the wider community as no successful business operation is completely isolated, but is indeed inextricably intertwined with the fortunes of those around it.

Spark has enjoyed a long relationship with the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce & Industry, being awarded the prestigious title of Business Person of the Year in 2008, and providing design and marketing services to the Chamber over a number of years. He is an active community member, supporter of the Ipswich Women's Development Network, Silver Category Sponsor and donor to the Ipswich Arts Foundation and dedicated supporter of the arts in Ipswich.

"The Chamber is a vital cog in the machine that has helped Ipswich become a dynamic city with exciting future prospects. I am enthusiastic about the role I can play in growing the Chamber and increasing benefits to Members and the wider community alike."

Extensive overseas travel didn't dull Naomi George's passion for her home town and so she left those adventures behind to head back to Ipswich. Initially working as a real estate agent, Naomi saw through new eyes all that Ipswich has to offer.

Now living adjacent to Ipswich's CBD with partner Michael Melling and their three children in a beautifully restored Queenslander, Naomi loves the convenience of services, sporting venues and business needs so close to hand.

Naomi and Michael's business Province Modern Country, located in Ipswich's historic Top of Town Precinct, was born out of a desire to offer a range of home and designer products of unprecedented quality and style. As a supplier, importer and manufacturer, Naomi's collections combine authentic antique, vintage and reproduction statement pieces from Europe, Asia, America and Australia.

Naomi is very proactive in her advocacy for Top of Town's potential and working with other local enterprises as part of the Top of Town Committee, Naomi believes strong and targeted promotion of the area will pay great business dividends.

Naomi is honoured to be on the Board of the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce and Industry and is looking forward to working towards a great future for Ipswich.

As the currently the Marketing and Communications Officer at Apprenticeships Qld, Anita has the task of growing Apprenticeships QLD market share of apprentices and trainees in South East Qld by actively marketing to industry and local community groups Anita has a broad range of experience dealing with various groups throughout the Ipswich community and beyond.

Previously Anita was Business Development Officer at Apprenticeships QLD, responsible for brand development, website traffic, social media strategy development and strategic and marketing plan implementation. She has also worked in community development programs offering young people the chance to actively engage with business and community developed commercially viable programs.

Anita studied Accounting at QUT and over the years has completed qualifications in Workplace Trainer and Assessor and Corporate Governance courses.

Lisa is the Director of Jarrold Consulting a property management consultancy which was formed in 2007.

She commenced her over 25 years career in Retail Property Management with Jones Lang Wootton, where she was involved in the Management of numerous Shopping Centres. Properties which have been in her management portfolio over the years have included Ipswich City Square, Booval Fair, and Redbank Plaza to name a few. In recent years Lisa was employed by Trinity Funds Management and managed Forest Lake Village Shopping Centre on their behalf through two major extensions. She consulted to the Ipswich City Council in the role of Ipswich Central Business Manager during the Development of the Ipswich Regional Centre Strategy which was released in 2008.

She currently is an Executive Director/Board Member of Ipswich Events Corporation and also provides management consultancy advice to Property Developers.

She was born and schooled in Ipswich having attended Ipswich Girls' Grammar School and participates in Old Girl Association activities including the organization of significant anniversary School Reunions.

Lisa's education includes a Bachelor of Business (Major Marketing); Assoc Diploma Business (Accountancy); and a Certified Shopping Centre Manager Accreditation from the Property Council of Queensland.

Amy brings to the Chamber a wealth of knowledge in various roles including Hospitality and Event Management, Public Relations and Executive Level Administration.

Her studies saw her complete a Business degree in Hospitality Management, which she followed up with real-world experience in hospitality, having worked in conference and event management in various locations, including Brisbane, Sydney and London.

She has significant experience working in Executive Administrative roles both in Brisbane and Sydney and more recently Amy completed work within Marketing and Public Relations in the Non Profit sector.

Amy is also no stranger to Small Business, having worked for her family's Rocklea-based small business of 15 years on and off throughout her career.

Amy is now based at Fernvale with her husband and young family and looks forward to exceeding members' expectations by delivering significant guest speakers to networking events, fostering opportunities for business growth and assisting in building the profiles of members and their businesses.

In Amy's own words "Through sharing purposeful business related information and delivering on projects and campaigns to strengthen the voice of local businesses, members will form a vibrant business community to further the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce & Industry as being coveted as the number one forward-thinking Chamber in Queensland."

Amy is therefore a welcome addition to the Team!

Teresa Harding has proudly lived and worked in Ipswich for eight years. Her husband Steven was born and raised in Ipswich and the youngest of her three children is a third generation Ipswichian.

Teresa holds a Masters in Management, Post Graduate Diploma in Management, Post Graduate Certificate in Information Technology and a Diploma in Small Business Enterprises.

Teresa ran as a candidate in the 2013 Federal Election and has a real passion and vision for the Ipswich community. She knows and appreciates what a beautiful and vibrant city we live in, and wants to contribute to its continued growth and prosperity.

Prior to the election Teresa held various senior management roles in the Department of Defence for over 10 years, including the role of heading up the maintenance organisation and later the disposal organisation of the F111 fighter jet. In these roles Teresa had 100 staff, around 950 contracted staff and an annual budget of $150 million.

Prior to joining Defence, Teresa worked in the private sector as an Account Manager and Regional Sales Manager for two IT firms. She also owned and ran a carpet cleaning business in Sydney.

Teresa has travelled extensively throughout the Americas and Asia and believes that Ipswich is the best place on earth to live and raise a family. Teresa and Steven have three children and live in Raceview.

Phillip was recently appointed to the role of Chief Financial Officer and General Manager Finance Services at the Bremer Institute of TAFE.

He is a proud Ipswich local. He and his wife are Directors of a family-owned company which has pastoral and agribusiness advisory interests in the Rosewood area. He also has interests in the Harness Racing Industry and has served as Treasurer of the Marburg Pacing Association.

Phillip is a CPA by profession and has worked in both private and public administration in both NSW and Queensland. His qualifications include a Masters of Commerce (Applied Finance), Post-Graduate Diploma in Applied Economics and Bachelor of Business (Accounting).

He would bring to the role a firm grounding in business and commerce, a proud association with, and commitment to, the growth and development of business in this region, and a fervent wish to advance commerce and industry through a skilled and job-ready workforce which provides a further advantage to business within our local region.

Dean has lived in Ipswich for the past 30 years and for the past 11 years has worked closely with Ipswich businesses consulting and assisting with the IT goals.

Completing his Bachelor of Information Systems at Australian Catholic University in 2003 and now a qualified PRINCE2 Project Manager he is now also a member of the Project Management Institute with the Queensland Chapter.

Dean has developed system plans and architecture for local business and has been part of several large locally implemented projects including the setup of communications stretching from Mt. Crosby to the Gold Coast for the Southern Regional Water Pipeline Alliance. Applying his project management knowledge and now with over ten years within the ICT arena, Dean is developing comprehensive strategic ICT business plans for businesses to ensure stability and growth through the many trying times experienced in the past three years and into the future.

He enjoys working on complex business challenges with a view to improve and innovate to overcome them and build a stronger future for all involved.

Roger is the current Media Sales Manager with APN, Qld Times Group. He has held many diverse roles including the Regional Manager – South West Qld for the CCIQ (Chamber of Commerce & Industry Qld. Roger is known as an innovative, intuitive, results driven management professional, with the ability to steer business fundamentals that stimulate business revenue and client growth.

Acknowledged throughout his career for employing clear ideas, standards and integrity to the mix of leadership and decision-making skills, he consistently wins the support of stakeholders, through honesty, trust and persuasive communications.

Roger is committed to building strong, strategic alliances and is keen to identify opportunities and provide strategic and operational business solutions. Roger will be relocating to Ipswich early in the New Year with his wife and family

With more than 30 years involved in Business initially with a home based operation moving on to International Marketing and Tourism companies, Tony also has been the Group Corporate Services General Manager of Alphaone Pty Ltd in Australia.

Tony has spent ten years working in Ireland & England developing businesses, business incubators and mentoring programs for small businesses, during that time Tony won an award in the EU for the work that he did.

Tony has been an advocate for small business ever since. He has also served as Director of Finance and Administration for over ten years with Surf Life Saving Central Coast.

The Business Enterprise Centre Ipswich Region has been in the top five Regional BEC’s in Australia and Tony has been nominated as the best BEC Manager in Australia.

Tony is currently a Member of:

  1. Australian Institute of Management
  2. Australian Institute of Company Directors
  3. Economic Development Australia
  4. Business Enterprise Australia, Queensland Board Member
  5. GIBIN panel member
  6. Ipswich Logan KEW committee member

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