General Manager, Bega Valley Shire Council
About Leanne Barnes
Leanne Barnes has been General Manager at Bega Valley Shire Council since January 2014. Leanne stepped up into the job following a 10 years as a Group Manager with the Council covering finance, human resources, community and cultural services, governance, communications, corporate planning and customer service. At the time of her appointment she was challenged by the Council to drive a cultural change in the organisation and this direction was supported through Council’s commitment of funds towards supporting Leanne’s leadership development. The team at Bega Valley is in the early stages of becoming more proactive, flexible, courageous and committed to engagement. In 2009 Leanne was awarded the NSW Ministers’ Award for Women in Local Government in the regional/rural staff category. This award reflected her commitment to leading considerable change and diversification in service delivery across a range of community and Council services. Previously Leanne has held leadership and management roles with Planning NSW, the Victorian Country Fire Authority, in local government in Victoria, with the Victorian Ministry for the Arts and in TAFE. She has also been a consultant in driving organisational governance change in the community sector and work in the not for profit sector. Leanne also has considerable Board experience with positions on a number of sporting and cultural organisations and is often approached to facilitate planning and governance sessions for community organisations. Leanne has represented at National and international levels in water polo, and was the coach of the Victorian State Team and the National Team. Over the period 1982 to 1997 Leanne lead the international and Australian campaign for the inclusion of women’s water polo onto the Olympic Games program – a campaign that was ultimately successful for the 2000 Olympic Games where Australia thrillingly won the first Olympic Gold Medal for Women’s Water Polo. As a result of her dedication to this sport she was awarded an Order of Australia Medial (OAM) as part of the Queens Birthday Honours List in 2019.