About Us

WRI's team of experts, associates, researchers are all based in the regions, and bring unique knowledge and insight into the dynamics of regional economies, businesses and communities. They are backed by a trusted and influential brand gained from over 20 years experience.

Kathy Woolley

With formal qualifications in change management, company directorship,  economics and training,  and well developed skills in human resources, information technology, finance and economic development,  Kathy offers a unique skill set to assist with most business needs. 

For a number of years Kathy also ran a consultancy specialising in services for not for profit entities, focusing on best practice techniques in management and governance.


This is the second time Kathy has worked for WRI,  previously fulfilling the role of Business Development Manager.  A position as a research officer for a similar organisation in the Illawarra rounds off the experience in economic modelling and research.

CEO - Economics, Local Government, Change Management, Governance - Bathurst

Chris Mullen

Chris is an Economics graduate from the University of New England, currently undertaking a Master of Economics course. Chris has a great interest and passion for macro and microeconomics, policy analysis, and development economics and skills in benefit-cost analysis, business statistics, and economic modelling.  

Research Officer - Economics, Data Analysis, Benefit Cost Analysis - Bathurst

Dale Curran

Dale has extensive experience in administration, financial management, corporate governance and design. Dale brings a high level of organisational skill and efficiency to her role as Executive Officer.

Executive Officer - Finances - Marketing - Bathurst

Heather Waters

Heather joins WRI in a Business Traineeship through Skillset and brings strong skills in customer serivce from her experience working in the retail industry. Raising a family in regional NSW, Heather is passionate about building strong rural communities.

Administration Officer - Customer Service, Reception, Bathurst

Juliet Duffy, MSMngt (USyd) MAICD

Juliet is an expert in environmental management and science.  She holds a Master of Sustainable Management from Sydney University and is the Managing Director of Regional EnviroScience with offices in Dubbo, Orange, Tamworth and Wagga Wagga.  Regional Envirosciences was recognised by the Australian Financial Review in the "Fast 100" list for 2017 - the fastest growing businesses in Australia for 2017.

Chair - Environmental Science and Management - Dubbo

Jo-Anne Strader, BComm (Hon) (Queens)

Jo-Anne is an accountant with senior level executive experience and is the Financial Controller for the global company DSM Nutritional Products Australia Pty Ltd.

Board - Finance - Wagga Wagga

Gavin Priestley

Gavin has an intimate knowledge of the issues confronting regional Australia has enabled him to contribute in both the Government (Federal and State) levels and commercial arena. Extensive experience and qualifications in management has assisted in developing remote teams ensuring professional service delivery of complex technical solutions.

Gavin set up the first Telstra Country Wide region. He has extensive experience in the political environment aligning commercial realities with Government direction.  Gavin served 5 years (pro bono) as Deputy Chair of Regional Development Australia, a jointly Federal and State funded organisation based in the NSW Central West. He also served a term as an elected representative on a large regional council.

Gavin is passionate about bringing education and employment opportunities to the smaller towns in NSW. He has  particular focus on training and employment for aboriginal youth in remote communities. His expertise in agriculture, regional development, education, information technology, quality processes, marketing, business management and construction in regional NSW communities are  beneficial to WRI. Gavin looks forward to the future alongside the Board and staff of WRI.

Board - Regional Development and Infrastructure - Bathurst/Orange

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(02) 6333 4000

0428 628 583

133 Piper St,

Bathurst NSW 2795

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Copyright 2017 Western Research Institute Limited ABN 76 090 089 991 

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