Dinner in support of Central Queensland
Mayors, Deputy Mayors and CEOs of Central Queensland Regional Councils; Director-General, Department of State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, Mr Mike Kaiser; CQROC Executive Officer, Ms Sandra Hobbs; distinguished guests, good evening.
I begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the lands around Brisbane, the Turrbal and Jagera people, and by paying my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and to our First Nations guests this evening.
Regional councils have a long-standing reputation for excellence in organising meaningful, welcoming and informative visits for Governors and their spouses – indeed, Graeme and I visited the Banana Shire and Central Highlands just three short weeks ago!
So, it is very pleasing to be able to extend a reciprocal invitation to you tonight as our special guests so that we can acknowledge and thank you personally for the service you give to your communities.
It’s now almost 18 months since I was sworn in as Queensland’s 27th Governor. At that time, I pledged to be a Governor for all Queensland and, I was delighted that my very first regional tour, within weeks of my swearing-in, included visits to both the Rockhampton Regional Council and the Woorabinda Aboriginal Shire Council.
The Gladstone Region and Livingstone Shire can be assured they have not been forgotten and are in fact high on my list to visit because the entire Central Queensland region is as close to my heart today as it was, almost 30 years ago, when I moved to Rockhampton as a single mother with a toddler in tow.
The local community made every effort to support me and my daughter, Rebecca, when we really needed it, and I will always be grateful for that. It truly is a very special part of Queensland.
One of my roles as Governor is to promote our wonderful State, and in support of that role, our Head Chef here at Government House prepares dinners that showcase the very best ingredients that Queensland has to offer.
Our benchmark is to feature Queensland-sourced produce as the main element on at least 90 per cent of our menus for official functions, but such is the variety and quality of our State’s local produce, we are currently sitting at 100 per cent.
The Government House cellar is also now stocked exclusively with Queensland wines. So, I hope you enjoy the tastes of Queensland that have been prepared for you tonight.
These occasions are a real highlight for me as Governor, and I again express my personal gratitude for all you do in advancing your regions, and in turn, our great State of Queensland.
It is truly a pleasure for Graeme and me to host you this evening, and we hope you enjoy the wonderful hospitality of Government House.