Rhi­nos re­think, roy­alty, and Re­lay.

Dubbo Photo News - - Weekender -

DUBBO’S Rhi­nos busi­ness awards have come and gone, and now the party hang­over has dis­si­pated it’s time for the city’s Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try to hold a de­brief and work out how to make next year’s event big­ger and bet­ter.

Well done to every­one for the ef­fort they put in to stage this event but I think this year’s af­ter-ac­tion ex­am­i­na­tion should work hard at get­ting all the neg­a­tive feed­back, from peo­ple who at­tended and those who won’t at­tend, to find out how to con­tin­u­ously im­prove.

I was in­ter­ested to see a Face­book com­ment from a bloke named Jim Ball who wasn’t scared to give some com­pre­hen­sive and de­tailed ad­vice – I’ll print it verbatim so no-one can ac­cuse me of tak­ing his com­ments out of con­text:

“Not a bad night. Less em­bar­rass­ing than the last two I’ve been to. Liked the sen­ti­ment and the fer­vor. Too much un­pro­fes­sional be­hav­ior from in­tro­duc­ers, win­ners and au­di­ence (which seemed ob­vi­ous to the MC): poor speak­ing, poor pre­sen­ta­tion (speak­ing, gum chew­ing, coats un­but­toned, hands in pock­ets, talk­ing dur­ing speeches; and the lack of re­spect for the dress-code). For a front-man for an im­por­tant or­ga­ni­za­tion Matt (Wright) needs to pol­ish his act fur­ther. He is charis­matic but he speaks too quickly, don’t you think? – hard for the more ex­pe­ri­enced among us still in the au­di­ence. As a po­lit­i­cal ve­hi­cle it is a lit­tle ob­vi­ous, but ir­re­sistible. Ben (Shields) went well.”

Some good and bad in that. I’ve talked to var­i­ous cham­ber board mem­bers about my con­cerns that too many im­por­tant busi­ness peo­ple in Dubbo shun the or­gan­i­sa­tion and its Rhino Awards.

Too many peo­ple over the years have told me they feel the Rhi­nos is a closed shop and that the award-win­ners come from the same in­flu­en­tial cir­cle in­side the or­gan­i­sa­tion, so that’s a per­cep­tion I’ve told them they have to work hard to change.

The Cham­ber break­fasts are a great ini­tia­tive and the city des­per­ately needs the or­gan­i­sa­tion to be the best it can be, so I hope their de­brief is frank and fear­less.

I’d be ask­ing peo­ple like Jim Ball to ad­dress them, along with some of the city’s most suc­cess­ful peo­ple who at the mo­ment don’t bother to even en­gage with the or­gan­i­sa­tion – find out why not, and ask them what they can do to bring them into the fold.

That would also mean the win­ners of the var­i­ous Rhino awards would be the real win­ners from the city’s en­tire busi­ness com­mu­nity, and not just from the small per cen­t­age who en­ter to start with, so a Rhino win would re­ally mean some­thing big­ger and have that broader cred­i­bil­ity that it lacks at the mo­ment.

I en­cour­age read­ers to get back to the Cham­ber with your feed­back – as a city we need to help them be the very best they can be.

Thanks Jim Ball for your coura­geous stand. PRE­DIC­TIONS of sav­age thun­der­storms saw or­gan­is­ers post­pone this year’s Orana Re­lay For Life less than 24 hours be­fore the event was sched­uled to start, and af­ter the tragedy at Geurie where a 53-year-old man was killed af­ter be­ing struck by light­ning, it looked like a wise de­ci­sion.

“While we un­der­stand that warn­ings may not al­ways be ac­cu­rate, it is para­mount that we think of the safety of the Re­lay­ers and their fam­i­lies, there­fore can not risk go­ing ahead with the Re­lay,” was how the mes­sage was spread.

“This de­ci­sion comes with great sor­row, how­ever the fight to beat can­cer con­tin­ues and we will work to­gether as a com­mit­tee to or­gan­ise an­other date for the event in the near fu­ture.

“We apol­o­gise for any in­con­ve­nience this may cause and hope every­one has a safe week­end away from the storm.”

Hope­fully they’ll find an ap­pro­pri­ate date to stage it later in the year. I HAD a quick yarn to Chan­nel 7’s na­tional po­lit­i­cal re­porter Alex Hart as he was check­ing in to fly out of Dubbo early on Thurs­day morn­ing, and he had four cans of the Old Bank’s Royal Beer in hand, what was left of a six-pack.

How good is that? All these very high-pro­file peo­ple got far more love from vis­it­ing Dubbo than they’d re­alised, and that’s go­ing to con­tinue pay­ing us back for years to come.

As Prince Harry has ap­par­ently sworn off the grog un­til wife Meghan has the royal tot, I’m hop­ing Kens­ing­ton Palace makes sure he wets the bub’s head with his mates while drink­ing a case of the Old Bank cans.

He could do a lot worse, and as the baby will be a mix of its par­ents, so was the beer de­signed to re­flect their dif­fer­ent her­itages. DUBBO’S Rod Fardell is pretty full-on at all times, but it sounds MARK COULTON has thrown his Akubra in the ring again, nom­i­nated by the Nats to con­test the fed­eral seat of Parkes for the fifth time.

There wasn’t much talk of any­one else hav­ing a crack to snare the nom­i­na­tion, so things seemed to go smoothly.

That’s very dif­fer­ent to the state pre-se­lec­tion where a lo­cal poll I heard about put Jil­lian Kilby at 50 per cent of the vote, yet the mem­bers handed it to Du­gald Saun­ders in­stead.

Both the state and fed­eral elec­tions are go­ing to be in­cred­i­bly in­ter­est­ing, I can­not wait for things to heat up, I’ve got so many great ques­tions I’m go­ing to fir­ing at all the can­di­dates.

I’m hop­ing that in­de­pen­dent can­di­date for the state seat Mathew Dick­er­son will re­veal more of his poli­cies this time around, he can’t keep claim­ing that he’s on his “lis­ten­ing” tour for­ever. SPEAK­ING of tours, and ones where there re­ally are plenty of home truths told with to­tal hon­esty, how about Joey Wil­liams.

This poor bloke suf­fers from such acute short term mem­ory loss that he strug­gles to get through the day, yet his amaz­ing book “De­fy­ing The En­emy Within” on how he’s worked to, and is still work­ing at, over­com­ing his strug­gles, is set to be re­leased in the USA and Canada from July next year.

He’s al­ready booked an air­line ticket over there and is busily lock­ing away cities JUST two days af­ter the royal visit, The Long Walk to Treat­ment was launched in Vic­to­ria Park.

The walk is be­ing car­ried out by 100 ev­ery­day Aus­tralians who will take turns walk­ing the 400km from Dubbo to Syd­ney to show­case the ex­treme dis­tances peo­ple in ru­ral ar­eas must travel to get help for drug treat­ment.

Lo­cal Shantell Ir­win, who is her­self seek­ing treat­ment, will be the very first walker.

“200,000 Aus­tralians per year are un­able to ac­cess the al­co­hol and other drug treat­ment ser­vices they need and peo­ple in re­gional ar­eas are of­ten hit hard­est,” ac­cord­ing to Group Ad­vo­cacy Direc­tor at Unit­ing, Doug Tay­lor.

Unit­ing runs the state’s only med­i­cally su­per­vised drug in­ject­ing cen­tre.

“A woman liv­ing in Dubbo and re­quir­ing res­i­den­tial re­hab treat­ment for drug de­pen­dency, has to travel a stag­ger­ing 400km to Syd­ney to ac­cess the treat­ment she needs to get well.

“Shantell’s plight is sim­ply hor­ri­ble. Un­for­tu­nately she is just one of many peo­ple in ru­ral ar­eas who aren’t able to re­ceive the treat­ment they want and need to as­sist with help­ing get them off drugs,” he said.

The Long Walk to Treat­ment (LWTT) will in­volve 100 walk­ers who will cover 500,000 steps over 15 days. Walk­ers will in­clude mem­bers of the pub­lic who are seek­ing treat­ment, lo­cal com­mu­nity groups, peo­ple who have suc­cess­fully been re­ha­bil­i­tated and church lead­ers.

The walk will fin­ish at NSW Par­lia­ment House in Mac­quarie Street.

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z Ad­di­tional re­port­ing by

News staff. Note: John Ryan is also a coun­cil­lor on Dubbo Re­gional Coun­cil, and is also em­ployed part-time by Land­care. He writes here in his ca­pac­ity as a jour­nal­ist.

Mem­ber for Parkes Mark Coulton (se­cond from right) with The Na­tion­als party Parkes ex­ec­u­tive Doug Mckay, Richard Chap­man, chair­man War­wick Knight, and Bar­won can­di­date An­drew Schier. PHOTO: SUP­PLIED.

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

Some ob­servers com­mented this past week that Dubbo’s Chan­nel 9 video jour­nal­ist Lily Cardis could pass as Meghan Markle’s younger sis­ter. I’d agree with that, there’s a fair like­ness there I reckon.

Chan­nel 7’s na­tional po­lit­i­cal re­porter Alex Hart with some lo­cally-brewed Dubbo Royale cans to take home. PHOTO: DUBBO

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