In 1989, the Bundaberg Tourism Board performed a feasibility study on the establishment of a business incubator and business support organisation in Bundaberg. Two years later, through the work of a visionary group of local business leaders, The Riverside Enterprise Association was established and incorporated as a Not for Profit Association.
After launching and operating Bundaberg’s first business incubator in an old warehouse on the banks of the Burnett River from 1991, the former Wyper Peterson hardware building was purchased and fitted out, and in 2004, our organisation relocated into its current headquarters which comprises a 28-space business incubator, conference centre and business advisory service.
Thirty years on, our organisation now known as Regional Business HQ is one of Australia’s longest continuously running business incubators, and since establishing, we have directly assisted more than 7000 local businesses.
In January of 2019, Regional Business HQ expanded its operations to include The Generator coworking space and innovation hub located above the Bundaberg Post Office. In October of 2019, we further expanded our footprint and opened The Generator Gympie to house our team of business support staff and to provide the Gympie region with a premium coworking facility.
In 2020, we rebranded from our former trading name of Bundaberg Business Enterprise Centre and took on our current name of Regional Business HQ to better reflect the range of services that we offer and the support that we provide to businesses across regional Queensland.
Our organisation maintains it commitment to strengthening business in regional Queensland and to helping create sustainable regional employment by assisting and nurturing new and existing businesses. Our voluntary Board of Directors continue to drive our strategic direction and as we grow our support and assistance for regional business, our team of dedicated and skilled staff work tirelessly to achieve our organisation’s purpose.
Our Points of Difference
Regional Business HQ is a not for profit, community-based organisation governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. We have thirty years of experience in supporting the needs of small business and our focus is on strengthening business and growing employment for the betterment of our local communities. We deliver professional, cost-effective and flexible solutions that aim to accelerate the time that it takes for a business to establish viability.
Our activities are guided by our Vision, Purpose, Values and Strategic Pillars:
To be the leading regional business support hub.
We drive economic prosperity, employment growth and stronger communities through supporting and creating thriving businesses.
- Service Delivery Excellence
- Our People, Resources and Skills
- Marketing and Awareness
- Revenue Growth and Asset Optimisation
- Effective Governance
- Partnerships and Collaboration
Meet the Team
Brooke commenced with Regional Business HQ in November 2020 and brings more than 20 years’ experience in business planning, marketing and tendering to the organisation.
Brooke brings extensive experience in government and private enterprise, with a strong background in business development, communication, engagement and marketing activities as well as managing tenders and bids. With experience across the infrastructure, construction, energy and government sectors, she provides valuable insight to help our clients succeed by implementing targeted strategies tailored to key stakeholders across a range of industries.
Brooke’s Qualifications include:
- Executive Leadership training
- IAP2 Certificate in Public Participation
- GRI Sustainability Reporting Process certification
- Graduate Certificate of Public Policy and Governance
- Bachelor of Business Management
(Generator Community Manager)
David commenced as Community Manager of The Generator Bundaberg in August 2022. David brings with him an established reputation and network having operated his own communications and training business for approximately 11 years.
Through that business , David has worked on a number of projects with Regional Business HQ including the Bundaberg Business Expo and numerous special events. He has also utilised The Generator as a client running training workshops and using the coworking space.
David’s vision for The Generator is to support a space where the business community can come together to learn, create, and build relationships.
- Bachelor of Behavioural Sciences (currently studying)
- Bachelor of Communications, Public Relations
- Bachelor of Business, Human Resources & Marketing
program coordinator and business advisor
Georgia Burgess is an accomplished human resources professional, with a passion for organisational development and partnering with businesses to ensure appropriate workforce strategies are effectively implemented to support business strategy and optimise organisational performance.
Georgia has worked across the for profit, not for profit and services sectors, including Bundaberg Regional Council, Friendly Society Private Hospital, Queensland Government, CUB, HSBC and Coca-Cola Enterprises, among others.
Georgia partners with business leaders to identify organisational needs and designs practical solutions to support organisational performance outcomes. With a passion for organisational development, Georgia is adept at project and change management, business transformation, process design, employee engagement, learning and development, leadership development, coaching and recruitment and selection.
Georgia’s qualifications include:
- Graduate Certificate in Applied Science, Innovation and Service Management
- DISC Accredited
- Articulate Storyline Expert
- Prosci Change Management Accredited
Entrepreneurship Facilitator-Bundaberg region
Ross Anderson specialises in economic development, marketing and business mentoring for Small to Medium Enterprises (SME’s), where he has previously acted as a Sustainability Coach for SME’s on behalf of CCIQ and assisted more than 100 budding entrepreneurs with business startups through the New Enterprise Incentive Scheme.
Ross has over 25 years’ business ownership experience in a variety of industries. Ross’s proven entrepreneurial and business management skills allow him to look at a client’s business through ‘fresh eyes’ often seeing areas for additional profit or cost savings that may not be apparent to the business owner who is often too immersed in their venture to be alert to these opportunities.
Acting with the highest levels of integrity in all his dealings, Ross seeks to work with clients who share the same values and respect for others as himself and are willing to learn and implement exciting proven strategies into their business to help them grow and realise their full potential.
Ross’s Qualifications include:
- Diploma of Project Management
- Diploma of Sustainability
- Cert IV in Training and Assessment
Entrepreneurship Facilitator-Gympie region
Having recently finished a contract delivering the Self Employment Assistance Program, Susanne is well placed to help people looking to explore self employment opportunities.
Her abilities are backed by practical experience owning her own businesses in the past, from a day spa to a mechanical workshop.
Throughout her time in self-employment, Susanne has experienced all facets of small business ownership, including daily operations, marketing, advertising, bookkeeping, human resources and customer satisfaction. Susanne’s passion for business and drive to see people excel means that she brings excitement as well as knowledge for those looking to leap into business.
Entrepreneurship Facilitator-Gympie Region
Jason joined the team on a part-time basis in January 2019 and works as an Entrepreneurship Facilitator within our Business LEAP team based in Gympie. Jason also runs a consulting and training firm that specialises in practical and innovative solutions for main street and rural-based businesses.
Beginning his career in a family owned hospitality business, Jason has had experience in retail and transportation before launching a successful farming business in 1994. Jason has worked with hundreds of individuals to help them to grow viable business operations.
Jason’s Qualifications include:
- Diploma of Business Management
- Holistic Management
- Cert IV in Training and Assessment
- Cert IV in OH+S
Administrator – Bundaberg
Kristy commenced with Regional Business HQ as a trainee receptionist in 2000 and in 2003 was promoted to Centre Administrator. Kristy has more than 20 years administration and financial experience and supports the financial and administrative functions of the organisation. Kristy is also a point of contact for our conference centre and provides support to tenants of our small business incubator.
Kristy’s qualifications include:
- Certificate lll in Business (Office Administration)
- Certificate IV in Financial Services (Bookkeeping)
Administration Support Officer – Gympie
Eden, born and raised in the Kilkivan and Gympie area, began her career in the hospitality industry, where she honed her customer service skills. In 2019, she joined the Regional Business HQ team as an Administration Officer, bringing her business administration experience to the role.
As the friendly first point of contact in the Gympie office, Eden is always ready to provide information about The Generator Gympie and the Business LEAP Team to clients and visitors.
Over the past four years, Eden has continued to hone her skills and develop her expertise in business administration. With six years of business administration experience under her belt, she is a dedicated professional who takes great pride in her work. Her exceptional organisational skills and attention to detail ensures that projects are completed to a high standard and delivered on time.
Eden’s qualifications include:
- Certificate II and III in Business
- Certificate III in Hospitality.
Lara joined the Regional Business HQ team in March 2021 as a school-based trainee working towards a Cert III in Business Administration. Lara is currently in grade 11 and works one day a week to gain knowledge and experience in business using Regional Business HQ as a steppingstone prior to graduating, entering the workforce.
While working at RBHQ as a trainee, Lara also taking accounting and hospitality as a couple of her senior subjects, she gets to experience both behind the scenes of a business and being the face of one too.
Lara also participates in a variety of sports both inside and outside of school. She has represented Wide Bay and Hervey Bay for softball, as well as representing her school in netball and is newly involved with basketball. As these sports are largely team orientated, Lara understands what it means to be part of a team to achieve a common goal to be successful and work with those around her.
Board of Directors
Tony was born and bred in Bundaberg and owned a sugar cane farm as part of a family company which was sold in November 2017. Tony is a member on the Management Committee of The Waves as secretary and has held that position for the past 28 years. He also has a position on the Club’s corporate governance sub-committee. Tony was appointed to the Bundaberg Region Sport & Recreation Advisory Group by the Bundaberg Regional Council since November 2011. The role of this advisory group is to assist the Council with its strategic planning and development of sporting and recreational facilities within its regional boundaries.
Other commitments include being a director of Clubs Queensland, Bridges Health & Community Care and Queensland Thunder Netball Club (Sunshine Coast).
Maria was re-elected as a director in 2021 having previously served on the board from 2016-2020 and currently co-owns and manages an incorporated legal practice that provides legal services online across Australia.
With a cross section of experience in customer relations, administration and management across various sectors in public, private and not for profit organisations, along with the creation and development of her own small businesses she has a broad view of local business. Maria was a tenant in the original incubator and enjoys being involved in the continued growth and development of RBHQ.
Maria’s qualifications include:
- Diploma of Business
- Diploma of Business Management and Leadership
- Cert IV Training and Assessment
- Justice of the Peace (Qualified)
Brant is Secretary and treasurer of the organisation and has been a serving Director since 2015. Brant is a commercial real estate agent with Four Walls Realty and begun his real estate career in 2006 with Ray White after gaining experience in customer service, managerial and sales roles. Although committed to real estate, Brant enjoys time away with his family and actively volunteers in the community.
Brant’s qualifications include:
- Registered Real Estate Salesperson
Jenny joined the Regional Business HQ Board in 2014 and was elected as Chairperson in 2017. With more than 30 years of experience in the travel industry and over 15 years managing busy metropolitan and regional travel agencies, Jenny brings a wealth of small business and people management experience to the organisation. Jenny managed a Bundaberg travel agency from 2004 until 2019 and has recently taken on a role within the NDIS sector.
Jenny’s qualifications include:
- Diploma of Travel
Bree was elected as a Director in 2019 and is Managing Director of Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers. Bree brings strong industry connections to the organisation and holds representative positions with the Queensland Horticulture Council, Regional Development Australia (Wide Bay Burnett), is the Chair of the CQUniversity Regional Engagement Committee and is an active member of several other local committees.
Bree’s qualifications include:
- B. Science (Hons)
- B. Env. Science
- B. Photography
Kelly joined the Board in 2021. She was born in Bundaberg and joined Charltons Lawyers in 2017. Kelly became a Partner of the firm in January 2019. Kelly graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with dual degrees in Law and Business.
Kelly was admitted as a solicitor in 2009. In 2013, she returned to study and completed a Graduate Diploma in property valuation and is an Associate member of the Australian Property Institute as a Certified Property Practitioner (Law).
Kelly primarily practises in the area of commercial law advising small to medium sized business, acting in property transactions, sale and acquisition of businesses and commercial leasing.