Directors Message - 19 January 2021

Peta-Maree Ashford FAILA, AILA National Vice-President

  Happy New Year to you all.  I hope you each had a rewarding festive season and found ways to recharge. Being WA based, I was able to get away to Rottnest Island and stay home, and was both busy and lazy - so all boxes ticked.  I did receive a pair of runners for Christmas though so perhaps a little too lazy.  

The disruption of 2020 was something to behold and I feel through conversations, there is a desire to harness the positives that came from that experience. 2021 is an opportunity to recalibrate priorities and crystalise values. AILA will still be taking a conservative approach to events this year, cognisant of the potential impact of any future COVID lockdowns, and wishing to ensure as little disruption as possible.  

From an organisational perspective, we remain focused on key organisational objectives. The Board and AILA team remain energised and enthused to work with and for our members.  Our roles continue to be rewarding with the opportunity to further improve and build our profession a key motivator through AILA’s revised strategic plan, anticipated to launch within the first quarter of 2021.  If we were to create an elevator pitch to describe AILA’s immediate primary focus, it could be summarised as: 

Advocacy: To continue our reach and relationship with all levels of government. 
Profile: Increasing an awareness of Landscape Architects and their value to the community, and to other design professionals.
Membership: Determining a direction for bolstering registration and other ways to lift the value proposition of membership.
Education: Ongoing University accreditation processes and a focus on school engagement.
Sustainable AILA: Sustain financial stability, working to increase whole of organisation collaboration and adopting improvements to internal policy and procedures.

To achieve this, we are reliant on so many members who participate on our various committees and working groups both on a local and national level.  Please know all this donated time genuinely benefits the profession and is truly appreciated.  There will be opportunities in the coming year to nominate for committees and working groups, so if this is of interest, jump onto the AILA website to understand the opportunities, and what might inspire you to become more involved, to help make change happen.   

I remain hopeful that the board will be able to travel more in the coming months and we would dearly like to re-connect and meet more members to hear first-hand your successes and challenges, and continue our work for you. 

Peta-Maree Ashford,
AILA National Vice President