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Katie McDonnell: Southern Forests & Valleys

Katie is the Executive Officer of the The Warren Blackwood Alliance of Councils (WBAC), a regional organisation of Councils, comprising of the Shires of Boyup Brook, Bridgetown-Greenbushes, Donnybrook Balingup, Manjimup, and Nannup. Established in 2001 in response to the restructure of the timber industry, the WBAC serves as a unified body working collaboratively on issues impacting the Warren and Blackwood catchments.

The WBAC exists to support the development of a prosperous and sustainable region in the Warren Blackwood and strives to enhance the quality of life for its residents. By engaging in, or supporting, significant projects that promote economic development, diversity, and encourage regional population growth, the WBAC actively contributes to the region's advancement.

The WBAC plays a pivotal role in bringing substantial value to both the region and its member councils. Through a unified approach, the alliance effectively leverages opportunities for funding, forms strategic partnerships, and facilitates economic development projects that benefit the entire Warren Blackwood community.

Katie McDonnell: Southern Forests & Valleys

Since 2013 the WBAC has led the progression of a collective tourism brand to undertake marketing for the region. Today, the Southern Forests & Valley tourism brand is a project of the WBAC with the aim for the region to be recognised as a highly desirable visitor destination, with a prosperous and sustainable tourism industry contributing to the region's sustainable future.

The primary objectives of the Southern Forests & Valleys tourism brand are to showcase, promote and highlight the region's tourism operators, attractions, events, and trails to increase visitation to the Southern Forests & Valleys region.

“The Southern Forests & Valleys region is located in the heart of Australia's South West, and stretches from Balingup to Walpole, Nannup to Boyup Brook and encompasses Bridgetown, Pemberton, Greenbushes, Manjimup and Northcliffe.”

Tourism is a vital industry that has the power to transform regions and contribute significantly to their economic, social, and cultural development. The Southern Forests & Valleys tourism brand has the opportunity to be a driving force for regional growth and sustainability. The brand has a clear mission to deliver strategic tourism leadership, guide the development of the visitor experience, support the development of industry capacity, and grow customer awareness of the region's tourism offering.

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