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Shire of Manjimup Director of Community Services Gail Ipsen Cutts was last week recognised for her outstanding contribution to local government when she was awarded the Western Australian Local Government Association (WALGA) Distinguished Officer Award as part of WALGA's 2020 Honours Program.
The award is granted for outstanding contributions made by employees of member Local Governments to the Local Government sector; leading by example, sustainable performance and best practice operations; and outstanding achievements, both professionally and personally, in the advancement of the Local Government sector.
A passionate and dedicated leader, Gail Ipsen Cutts' journey with the Shire of Manjimup commenced on the 19 September 2001 as the Manager of Human Resources. Gail has been in her current position as the Director of Community Services since the 1 January 2005. To this point in time, Gail has provided 19 years of continuous service to the Shire of Manjimup.
As the Director of Community Services, Gail is responsible for three departments - Recreation and Community Services, Libraries and Cultural Services and the Manjimup Home and Community Care. Under Gail's direction, the community services team provides a range of services to assist community development and community capacity building, including building partnerships and providing support for community groups and organisations with grant applications, event organisation, training and fostering an inclusive community.
Gail has been behind many remarkable achievements for the Shire such as the Wellness and Respite Community Centre, the Manjimup Seniors Housing Project, the revitalisation and redevelopment of the award winning Manjimup Heritage Park, incorporating the PowerUp Museum and the refurbishment of the award winning State Timber Museum.
In the 12 months following the O'Sullivan fire in 2015, Gail took on the role of Emergency Recovery Team Co-ordinator ensuring the physical and mental wellbeing of residents and emergency personnel involved. She is now immersed in leading the Shire's COVID-19 Recovery Committee coordinating the welfare requirements and business recovery from the pandemic's impact and also in the plan for the development of the Pemberton Community Hub.
It's a team effort "I feel very humble and honoured to have been nominated for the WALGA Distinguished Officer Award. Without a doubt this award is a reflection of the incredible team of Shire officers, community members and volunteers who believe, as passionately as I do, in the community and the opportunities that this region has to offer. This award acknowledges many great achievements and I thank the Councillor's for nominating me and accept it on behalf of the entire team that backs me up, holds me accountable and always challenges me to keep believing in what we can achieve" Gail said.
In recognition of Gail's contribution to the region Shire President Paul Omodei commented, "the Honours Program is a great opportunity to reflect on our outstanding community leaders who are driving and implementing change at the community level. Gail's passion and vision for our community is undeniable, she strives consistently for the betterment of services to, and the liveability of our Shire. Gail is without a doubt a most worthy recipient of this award and I congratulate and thank her for her contributions, influence and achievements".
WALGA President Tracey Roberts presenting the Award to Gail Ipsen Cutts.
Authorised by Andrew Campbell, Chief Executive OfficerContact Sheri Laba, Public Relations Officer
Contact for comment: Paul Omodei, Shire PresidentContact: 0448 810 773