The countdown is on to the 125th LGAQ Annual Conference

Published: 14th October 2021

The LGAQ’s 2021 Annual Conference is now less than two weeks away.

This year marks two very important milestones – 125 years since the establishment of the LGAQ, as well as our long-serving CEO Greg Hallam’s retirement.

Held at the Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre from 25-27 October, the conference theme this year is ‘Together’, recognising that our level of government is at its most effective when we work together and speak with one voice.

We are now well into the second year of this local government term and together we have provided immense support for our communities through natural disaster and the darkest days of COVID-19.

In local government, we are at the coalface when it comes to supporting our communities through difficult times. We are also always looking forward to continue to sustain and foster the wellbeing and future opportunities for our communities as we begin to emerge from the pandemic.

As such, a key program highlight is a keynote address from renowned demographer and commentator Bernard Salt AM, who will note the challenges and opportunties that lie ahead. 

Celebrating the hard work of Queenslanders will also be a highlight with the announcement of two Local Government Community Champions and this year there will be extra time for Council Forums - a chance to discuss and debate key issues in the state.

Annual Conference 2020

LGAQ President Mayor Mark Jamieson addresses the 2020 Annual Conference

What you can expect at this year’s event

Demographic Destiny

Our keynote speaker, celebrated demographer and commentator Bernard Salt AM, will assess the current state of play in our sector and the challenges that lie ahead. Bernard draws upon vast datasets to interpret the overall trajectory of social change in the past and into the future. His analysis has made him one of the most in-demand speakers on the Australian corporate speaking circuit.

The Future of IoT for Queensland Councils

Internet of Things (IoT) is a huge opportunity for Queensland Councils. Griffith University’s Professor Rodney Stewart will speak about how councils can revolutionise their citizen engagement, asset management and decision making in the near future.

Beyond the Finish Line

This year's conference attendees will hear some inspiring words from athletes at the top of their sport. Blake Cochrane, a four-time Paralympian, exercise psychologist and Olympic Gold Medalist in BMX Freestyle Logan Martin, and athlete, doctor, speaker and author Jana Pittman will all share their stories.

Award presentations

2021 LGAQ Journalism Award

The LGAQ Regional Journalism Award is dedicated to showcasing excellence in reporting in regional Queensland. The award honours the memory of ABC journalists John Bean, Paul Lockyer and Gary Ticehurst. The 2021 winner will receive a $15,000 prize.

2020 Journalism Award winner Caitlyn Gribbin

2020 Journalism Award winner Caitlyn Gribbin

2021 Alison Woolla Award

The Alison Woolla Memorial Award was established to recognise anti-violence leadership in our Queensland community, in honour of pioneering former mayor of Aurukun Shire Council, Alison Woolla. The winner of the 2021 Alison Woolla Memorial Award will receive a $5000 cash prize and will host the hand-crafted artwork created by Brisbane artist Laura Vincent for 12 months.

Butch Lenton Memorial Bush Council Innovation Award

The Butch Lenton Memorial Bush Council Innovation Award, a Peak Services' initiative, was created to recognise innovation in Queensland’s bush councils and celebrate the contribution the late Mayor of Winton Shire, Graham ‘Butch’ Lenton, made to his beloved community and local government in Queensland. 

Council Showcases

This year’s Council Showcases feature leading projects by councils, from creating hydrogen from household wastewater to the first steps to a FOGO future. These panel discussions put top council projects in the spotlight and give attendees the opportunity to ask questions. 

Conflict Resolution Workshops and Discussions

Peak Services will be hosting professional development sessions in de-escalating aggressive and hostile language. These workshops will equip you with the skills to better handle confrontation in a variety of forms.

Independent Assessor Kathleen Florian will also speak on the topic of conflicts done better, which will be followed by a panel discussion facilitated by LGAQ Head of Assist Glen Beckett with guests Kathleen Florian, King & Company Solicitors Executive Partner Tim Fynes-Clinton and Noosa Shire Council CEO Brett de Chastel.

Boost Your Brand

A keynote address from Jodie Bache-McLean, Managing Director of June Dally Watkins and Chic Management Brisbane, will provide key points on how to elevate your personal brand. Jodie Bache-McLean is Australia’s pre-eminent expert in etiquette and elocution, helping people from all walks of life in the finer points of personal communication, presentation and etiquette.

2020 Annual Conference panel


Council Forums

More time has been allocated to forums this year, in particular, the Indigenous Leaders Forum will take place from 10:30am-5:00pm on 25 October.

Come and join with your council peers to discuss, share, and debate key issues. This is also your opportunity to talk with each other and your Policy Executive members about ways the LGAQ can help and support your council. The forums will be hosted by the LGAQ Policy Executive members.

Please register for the forum that you believe will most interest your council – if you can’t decide you are welcome to send delegates to separate forums.

Delegates/observers are welcome to attend any one of the forums:  

  • Rural and remote councils 
  • Resources councils
  • SEQ Councils
  • Coastal Councils