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Women standing together with the Minister of Sport and Recreation in Kings Park, Perth.

Photo: (left to right) Kelsie Prabawa-Sear, CEO, Nature Play WA; Rosalie Evans, Executive Officer, Paddle WA; Penny O’Connor, Secretary Board Member, Trails WA; Therese Logue, Executive Officer, Munda Biddi Trail Foundation; Elizabeth Harding, Chair, WA 4WD Association; Kathleen Broderick, Chair, Bibbulmun Track Foundation; Leith Fradd, Executive Officer, Parks & Leisure WA; Katie Brown, Chair, Outdoors WA; with Hon David Templeman, Minister for Culture and the Arts; Sport and Recreation; International Education; Heritage.

In Western Australia our recreation industry is leading the way, with more women in senior board and executive roles than ever before.

These women are helping shape the industry to be more inclusive and accessible for people of all backgrounds, ages, and abilities.

Outdoors WA Chair Katie Brown said there were some amazing women within the recreation sector who were great role models to younger people.

“Women bring a richness and unique way of thinking into leadership roles. It’s important they are supported both emotionally and financially so they can be involved in the outdoors,” she said.

“As Outdoors WA we represent the whole sector. For us it’s about supporting the other organisations to ensure there’s diversity on the board and within the workplace.”

When it comes to this year’s theme of ‘Counting her in’, Nature Play WA is leading by example with a supportive all-female team who champion each other’s career development.

Chief Executive Officer Dr Kelsie Prabawa-Sear said her organisation not only had women employees of all ages, but also ran programs focused on women and tween and teen girls.

“Research shows us that within the tween and teen girl age group, 90% don’t get enough physical activity for good health,” she said.

"Our award-winning Talk N Walk program focuses on girls this age and getting them physically active and socially engaged, and we're thrilled that programs like this are being recognised for their value and importance."

Munda Biddi Trail Foundation Executive Officer Therese Logue said the organisation wanted to make it more achievable for women to get outdoors and enjoy bike riding in natural spaces.

“The Munda Biddi Trail is the perfect environment to do this,” she said. “This year we’ve got the Adventure Cycling event series with quite a few programs to encourage women to participate in mountain biking or adventure cycling.”  

Parks and Leisure Australia (WA) Executive Officer Leith Fradd said the increasing number of women pursuing careers in the parks and leisure industry was truly inspiring.

“Providing access to networks, resources, and professional development opportunities is key to supporting women in exploring new pathways,” she said.

“I take great pride in working in such a fantastic industry, supported by passionate individuals — both men and women — who are committed to sharing knowledge and best practices.”

The department is proud to support the leaders of our recreation industry, and the organisations they represent, through our funding and development programs such as Outdoor Active Recreation Participation Grants ProgramWA Hiking Participation Grants and Industry Investment Program that help get more people, more active outdoors.  


Page reviewed 27 February 2023