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Local Futures

WALGA Local Government Convention 2023

Registrations are now open

17 – 19 September 2023

Register Now

WALGA Local Government Convention 2023

WALGA’s annual Local Government Convention brings together hundreds of Elected Members and Local Government staff from across Western Australia to discuss and examine important issues and trends facing the sector.

Themed Local Futures, this year’s Convention will explore how Local Governments can enact and drive change for the benefit of their communities and the diversity of solutions that can emerge when you start local.   

There will be inspiring keynote speakers, plenary sessions delving into topical issues and, for the first time, a Supplier Showcase featuring WALGA preferred suppliers showcasing the latest innovations across service industries such as transport and waste management.

Register today to be informed, motivated and part of the conversation about Local Futures. 

Featured Speakers

We are excited to have several prominent speakers on the 2023 Convention program. Stay tuned as we welcome more speakers shortly.

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Dominic Thurbon

Business Disruptor and Transformer

Dominic Thurbon

Dominic Thurbon is an internationally engaged author, researcher, speaker and thought leader in the fields of innovation, behaviour change and organisational transformation.

For over a decade Dominic has been helping global organisations such as Apple, Commonwealth Bank, IBM and Microsoft to build critical strategies in order to address change and then drive it.

Boasting a wealth of first-hand experience in business and the challenges that come with it, Dominic has also developed a range of multi-award-winning behaviour change programs to help organisations drive innovation and change where required.

He has also researched and authored best-selling books and white papers on a wide range of subjects, including purpose-driven leadership, strategy, innovation, competitive advantage, and behaviour change.

Dominic’s keynote address will focus on how leaders within an organisation can make sense of and respond to the profound forces of change that are reshaping organisations and society today. It is the changes we make today that will help to drive better outcomes for the future.

Keynote Presentation
Date: Monday 18 September 2023

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Michelle Payne

Australian Jockey, Trainer and Author

Michelle Payne

Michelle Payne became a national icon when she captured the hearts of a nation after winning the 2015 Melbourne Cup on the 100 to 1 priced Prince of Penzance.

The first and only female to win the event, Michelle’s triumph catapulted her into stardom where she is now a highly successful trainer, jockey and author.

Growing up on a farm at Miners Rest, near Ballarat in Central Victoria, Michelle is the youngest daughter of the ten children of Paddy and Mary Payne. Tragically, Michelle’s mother Mary died in a motor vehicle accident when Michelle was only six months old.

Being born into a racing family, a career in the saddle always beckoned Michelle, and she followed seven of her brothers and sisters when she rode in her first competitive race at just 15.

Michelle’s career hasn’t been without challenges.  In 2004 she suffered a fractured skull and bruising to her brain after a race fall.  Michelle suffered another two serious falls in 2012 and in May 2016, the latter required pancreatic surgery and a long recovery, before yet another inspiring comeback to racing.

In 2016, Michelle was awarded the highly coveted Don Prize for Most Inspirational Australian Athlete at the Sport Australia Hall of Fame Awards, along with the Sportswoman of the Year for the Cosmopolitan Magazine Awards and the Women of Style: Sport Award for InStyle Magazine. Michelle and her brother Stephen were also given the honour of being named Queen and King of Moomba.

In 2017, Michelle received The International Longines Ladies Awards in Washington celebrating women who have consistently achieved at the highest level within the equestrian world, and in 2022 this year was awarded the Order of Australia medal (OAM) for services to horse racing.

Michelle released her first book, Life As I Know It in 2016, and in 2019, her inspiring story made its way to the big screen as the major motion picture Ride Like A Girl,  the highest-grossing Australian film that year.

In 2021 her Melbourne Cup victory was voted by the public as the most significant Sport Australia Hall of Fame moment from a shortlist of 20 outstanding sporting moments over the past 60 years.

Michelle now runs a very successful training facility in Ballarat and has recently expanded to the Sunshine Coast in Queensland.

Convention Breakfast

Date: Tuesday 19 September 2023

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Gihan Perera

Futurist and Author

Gihan Perera

Gihan Perera is a futurist, conference speaker, online presenter, and author who shows you how to be fit for the future in a fast-changing world.

For 25 years, Gihan has worked with organisations and leaders globally – helping them to thrive in a fast-changing world. Since the pandemic, he has helped people lead in uncertain times, and act with clarity and confidence through crisis, recovery, and growth.

Gihan will be speaking at the Mayors & Presidents Forum at the 2023 WA Local Government Convention, sharing his insights into the future of the Local Government sector and how organisations can be prepared to adapt, change and grow.

Mayors and Presidents Forum
Date: Sunday 17 September 2023


The State of Play

The West Australian’s fearless Chief Reporter Ben Harvey will moderate a discussion with State Members of Parliament. With 24 years’ experience in journalism, Ben is renowned for his ability to cut through the political waffle with his unique interviewing style that equally grills, disarms and charms politicians alike. 

Diversity Panel

Cast an eye across WA’s 139 Local Governments and you will see many that have led the way in encouraging people from many backgrounds to run for Council. But collectively there is still a lot of work to do. On this panel you will hear from Elected Members with unique perspectives who have broken the mould and been elected to serve their communities. The panel will encourage a discussion about the barriers they faced, why the voices of people from diverse backgrounds must be heard, and how Local Government can change to facilitate people from all walks of life.

Regional Housing

Access to housing is a major roadblock in attracting people to live, work and play in regional WA. Whether it be affordable homes for those in need, the ability for a family to build their dream or lack of access to holiday homes, the myriad issues ranging from private sector investment to competition with major local employers will be examined by the panel.

Active Mobility

There are numerous ways people now move into and throughout cities and neighbourhoods, and they are increasing in diversity.

E-Rideables were barely on the horizon 10 years ago.  Today Local Governments are grappling with how to provide universal infrastructure and integrate those eRiders with walkers, riders, skateboarders and wheelchair users.

Download Program

Supporting Events

Alongside the Convention, WALGA will be hosting various supporting events and networking opportunities. Separate registration is required for each event. 

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Mayors and Presidents Forum

3:30pm - 5:00pm17 September 2023

This is an invitation-only event for all Local Government Mayors and Presidents from across Western Australia to come together to discuss topical issues featuring futurist Gihan Perera who will share his insights on how to prepare for the future in a fast-changing world.

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Welcome Drinks and Local Government Awards

5:00pm – 8:30pm17 September 2023

A great opportunity to network with other Elected Members and Local Government staff from across Western Australia while enjoying refreshments and live music. Winners of the prestigious Local Government awards will also be announced.

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Heads of Agencies Breakfast

7:00am – 9:00am18 September 2023

This event is for Mayors, Presidents and CEOs only and invitations will be sent directly. This event provides Local Governments with a valuable opportunity to discuss issues of importance within their communities directly with key State Government decision-makers.

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Annual General Meeting

2:00pm – 5:00pm18 September 2023

WALGA holds its Annual General Meeting (AGM) of members each year alongside the WA Local Government Convention. This meeting is an opportunity for WALGA to share its annual report and to discuss key issues raised by Local Governments.

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Gala Cocktail Function

6:30pm – 9:30pm18 September 2023

Held at The Westin Perth, this will be a fun evening with delicious food, drinks, entertainment and dancing.

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Convention Breakfast

7:30am – 9:00am19 September 2023

Prepare to be inspired by the courageous and moving story of Michelle Payne – the first and only female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup. Michelle will share stories about her life and racing experiences in a male dominated industry.

Convention Exhibition and Supplier Showcase

Taking place alongside the WALGA Local Government Convention 2023 is the WALGA Supplier Showcase 2023.

This is a unique opportunity to meet with key suppliers and learn about the latest innovations and technologies available across the sector.

The Supplier Showcase is hosted outdoors at Crown on September 19-20 and is ideal for exhibitors with large-scale products and machinery such as transport and waste management suppliers.

As per previous years, space will also be available from September 18-19 inside Crown for exhibitors at the WALGA Convention Exhibition, a space suited for professional services and information stalls. Suppliers can choose to host an exhibit inside, outside, or both.

Space is limited and last year’s event sold out quickly.

Interested in running a supplier or exhibitor booth?

Convention Information

Map of WALGA conference

Registrations for the WALGA Local Government Convention 2023 are now open.  

Register today to be the first to hear about important event updates speaker announcements and session topics.


17 – 19 September, 2023


Crown Perth


Don't miss out! Register now.