From the Executive Chair

Advance Cairns has secured a coup with its new chief executive officer, which is being announced today.

Jacinta Reddan has had a long and successful career in communications, marketing, government relations and public affairs, much of it in the Asia Pacific.

She has a deep understanding of a host of industries – including tourism – in Cairns’ most significant export region and is well respected in the Hong Kong business community through various senior roles she has filled which include leading Australia’s largest international chamber of commerce, the 1400-member Australian Chamber of Commerce (AustCham), head of Asia Pacific communications & marketing at two global financial services corporations and Asia PR & marketing manager for Tourism Australia during the opening of the China leisure market and the lead-up to the Sydney Olympics.

Importantly, Jacinta has a strong affinity with regional Australia having grown up in south-west Victorian city of Warrnambool. We look forward to her starting with the Advance Cairns team on October 4.

View the full press release here:

Jacinta takes on the role as the new Federal Government sets out to address the dire labour shortage impacting the far north and nation more broadly with its Jobs and Skills Summit this week. At a local level ALP Senator Nita Green has hosted jobs and skills round tables in Cairns and Mareeba as a precursor to the national event hosted by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

Later this month we look forward to the Cairns Post’s important initiative Future Cairns – Towards 2050. We would encourage members to attend this event to hear insightful presentations and to contribute to the conversation.


Nick Trompf
Executive Chair
Advance Cairns

Cairns Jobs and Skills roundtable

This week, Advance Cairns joined the Cairns Jobs and Skills roundtable hosted by Senator Nita Green ahead of the National Jobs and Skills Summit. A broad cross section of the community met to discuss the economic challenges we face as well as potential immediate and long-term solutions to these challenges.

The roundtable focussed on four key themes, guided by the Summit issues paper:

  • Boosting job security and wages
  • Delivering a high-quality labour force through skills, training and migration
  • Lifting participation and reducing barriers to employment
  • Maximising opportunities in the industries of the future

Three roundtables have now been held, one each in Mareeba, Cairns, and Townsville. Co-chair of the roundtables, Professor Allan Dale, will be attending the Summit in Canberra which kicks off today.

For more information on the Jobs and Skills Summit: Jobs and Skills Summit |

Future Cairns – Towards 2050

Sustainability, liveability, and connectivity will be key themes at this month’s Future Cairns – Towards 2050 summit hosted by the Cairns Post on Tuesday, 20 September.

Accompanying the event’s host and Cairns Post editor Jennifer Spilsbury are:

  • Richard Barker, Cairns Airport CEO;
  • Ed Johnson, Cairns Regional Council Director of Planning, Growth and Sustainability;
  • Kate Meyrick, Urbis Director;
  • and keynote speaker Simon Kuestenmacher, co-founder of the Demographics Group.

For more information or to book your tickets go to

Upgrades begin on Cairns port

The first piles have been driven in a $32m State Government investment into new and upgraded wharves at the Port of Cairns.

The project, for which Advance Cairns successfully advocated, is being led by Ports North and delivered by specialist contractor SMC Marine (which has set up an operational base in Cairns), with a range of local companies providing key sub-contracting services including HEH Civil, Aurecon, Dawsons Group and CSF Industries.

Each of the 90 piles to be driven weighs 10 tonne and will underpin two new wharves – one of 50m and another larger double-faced wharf of 85m – as well as upgrading an existing facility.

The project is a significant precursor to larger upgrades at the Port of Cairns, which will ultimately be home to at least four new Navy offshore patrol vessels in the next decade. The mega-project to come is the planned common user facility, for which the Federal and State Governments have jointly pledged $300m.

CQUniversity appoints new Chancellor

Congratulations to Mr Graeme Innes AM, who has been appointed CQUniversity’s new Chancellor.

Mr Innes is a lawyer, author, and company director who is known nationally and internationally as a human rights advocate, championing disability rights and influencing policy and decision-making throughout his distinguished career.

He will be officially installed as Chancellor at CQU’s Rockhampton graduation ceremony on 6 December 2022, while retiring Chancellor Mr John Abbott AM will be officially farewelled at the Gladstone graduation ceremony on 9 December.

Click here for more information on the exciting appointment.

State Cabinet to visit Torres Strait

Torres Strait Island communities will have the chance to present local concerns and priorities directly to State Government leaders, following Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s announcement that Cabinet will meet on Thursday Island on Tuesday, September 6.

The premier said MPs will visit outer islands and several locations across the Cape in addition to the Cabinet meeting on Thursday Island.

“This is a great opportunity for the community and local government leaders to share ideas, priorities, challenges and opportunities,” said Ms Palaszczuk.

The visit will follow Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s trip to the Torres Strait in August with Indigenous Affairs Minister Linda Burney and Senator Nita Green to discuss enshrining First Nations people in the constitution with the proposed Voice to Parliament body.

For more information on the upcoming Cabinet visit, click here.

Defence Industry Networking event

Are you looking to break into the Defence industry, expand your Defence portfolio, or connect with like-minded businesses in the region?

Defence Industry Networking is hosting its inaugural Cairns event on Thursday, September 15, offering an exciting opportunity for local businesses and stakeholders within or interested in the Defence sector to connect and build their industry network in the region.

If this sounds like something your business could benefit from, find more information on the event here.

Flinders Shire attracts record tourism numbers

A record number of tourists visited the Flinders Shire and Hughenden region in 2021-22, surpassing even pre-COVID numbers according to new data from Flinders Shire Council.

Almost 27,500 visitors came through Flinders Discovery Centre in the last financial year, 11 percent more than the previous year and a huge 42 percent increase on numbers recorded during COVID-19 travel restrictions in 2019-20.

Significantly, the figure also eclipsed pre-COVID levels by as much as 30 percent, with the region seeing an average of 21,100 visitors annually prior to the pandemic.

For more information on the top spots to explore in the region, go to

Superyacht Group welcomes executive committee member

Superyacht Group has welcomed Edge Smartech’s Jim Bradley to the team as its newest Executive Committee member.

The well-established local businessman has worked in telecommunications services for more than 30 years, picking up multiple National Distributor of the Year awards for Telstra before the company’s transition to distribution and resale under the Edge Smartech brand.

Jim has replaced former board member Emma Connelly from Ocean Blue Legal following the latter’s move south to Tasmania.

Click here to read Jim Bradley’s full bio and business background.

TAS students cut hair for cancer

Trinity Anglican School students have raised a whopping $25,000 for cancer research through their annual Cancer Council Ponytail Project.

Fifteen students and three teachers made the generous chop for charity in front of their peers, with the donated locks to be turned into wigs for cancer patients.

Congratulations to everyone who took part!

Pictured: TAS school captain Aurelia Wood donated 60cm of hair to the project.
Photo credit: Romy Photography

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