Bundaberg pioneers Chief Entrepreneur appointment

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Community Lifestyle Support's Damien Tracey, Chief Entrepreneur Michael Ryan Norton and Mayor Jack Dempsey.
Community Lifestyle Support's Damien Tracey, Chief Entrepreneur Michael Ryan Norton and Mayor Jack Dempsey.

Bundaberg is believed to be one of the first regional communities in Australia to appoint a Chief Entrepreneur.

The Bundaberg Region's business ecosystem will be heavily supported over the next six months thanks to Michael Ryan Norton taking on the role.

Mr Norton has been engaged by Community Lifestyle Support to provide ongoing help in developing and strengthening local business.

The start-up and innovation consultant landed in the region this week from America and will be taking his expertise to the streets to work with current and emerging businesses.

“My intention is to help Bundaberg's entrepreneurial ecosystem become a thriving vibrant world of new business and strong business,” he said.

“I will be focused on helping all of the different organic stakeholders work together well because when they do, they'll thrive.”

Mr Norton said although he had only been in Bundaberg for a few short hours, he was already impressed by what the region was trying to achieve.

“I am encouraged by the collaboration that I see already,” he said.

“I think Bundaberg is ripe for innovation and growth. I am very excited to see what I can help Bundaberg create.”

Mr Norton said during his six-month stay he would be mapping out the business ecosystem, meeting with various businesses and engaging in workshops to help people bring their ideas to fruition.

“I will be looking at what's here and looking for patterns about how it all works together,” he said.

“It' all about how we can strengthen business relationships in creative ways.”

Chief Entrepreneur: Council forward thinking

Mr Norton today met with Mayor Jack Dempsey to discuss future plans Council was working towards for the region.

“I think Bundaberg Regional Council is refreshingly forward thinking,” he said.

Mayor Jack Dempsey meets with Chief Entrepreneur Michael Ryan Norton.
Mayor Jack Dempsey meets with Chief Entrepreneur Michael Ryan Norton.

“They are creating a variety of opportunities and inviting Bundaberg to participate in making innovation accessible.

“Their vision for the future of Bundaberg is one that I see as very positive and healthy for the city.”

Mayor Jack Dempsey said Mr Norton's appointment was a coup for the region and would benefit those in business as well as the community as a whole.

“We live in such a vibrant, bustling place and there are already many people here who are achieving great things,” he said.

“With Michael's help, I know we can go another step further and create even stronger business relationships and goals that will further shape our region in a positive way.”

Becoming an entrepreneur

Mr Norton said entrepreneurship was for anyone who either had a great idea or saw the good in what could be achieved.

“Entrepreneurship is available to anyone that has any idea for improving the city, for creating value for the citizens of Bundaberg,” he said.

“Even if they don't have a brilliant idea, their awareness for the needs of the community is what makes their voice important.”

Mr Norton will be in the Bundaberg Region for the next six months and will be involved in a range of workshops and events including a startup weekend in September and more.

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