- Mr James McKechnie commenced role as Director of External Engagement for Dubbo on Monday 20 January 2020
- The newly-created role is responsible for advancing Charles Sturt’s community engagement and furthering the University’s and Orana region’s strategic objectives
Charles Sturt University’s new Director of External Engagement for Dubbo, Mr James McKechnie (pictured), will use his passion for regional Australia and desire to connect with local communities to develop opportunities between the University and the surrounding region.
Mr McKechnie commenced in the part-time role with Charles Sturt on Monday 20 January, and will be based in Dubbo.
He is responsible for advancing the University’s engagement with its communities by building relationships and outcomes that support both Charles Sturt and the region’s strategic objectives.
Mr McKechnie said he is looking forward connecting the University with people and organisations to enhance its already important standing in the Dubbo community.
“I am passionate about continuing to build on the work Charles Sturt University has done in Dubbo and the surrounding region,” he said.
“The University has a proud tradition of not only providing first-class higher education opportunities but of actively engaging with and enhancing communities in regional Australia.
“I look forward to dedicating myself to the task of opening up more avenues for Charles Sturt University to serve this community.”
Charles Sturt Director of Industry and Community Engagement Associate Professor Laura Dan said Mr McKechnie will be a key player in connecting the University with organisations in the Dubbo community.
“The role is a vital one for the University and will deliver many benefits for the wider Dubbo region,” Mrs Dan said.
“As well as representing Charles Sturt University's interests, Mr McKechnie will support the development of the area through initiatives like the Community-University Partnerships Community Grants program, by attracting speakers from diverse disciplines to share the latest ideas, and seeking opportunities to bring conferences and events to the city.
“He will work closely with the community to promote regional development and deliver mutually-beneficial outcomes, and I have every confidence he will do so successfully.”
Mr McKechnie is an alumnus of Charles Sturt, having completed a Bachelor of Business majoring in Marketing at the Bathurst campus in the 1990s.
That qualification led to a 20-year management career in local government in the fields of economic development and recreation planning in both Orange and Dubbo.
Mr McKechnie said his experience and contacts would prove invaluable as he takes up the position of Director of External Engagement in Dubbo.
“Those roles let me build strong local relationships with people and industries that will help strengthen and expand Charles Sturt University’s engagement with its regional communities,” he said.
“My appointment as Director of External Engagement for Dubbo further demonstrates the University’s commitment to serving Dubbo and the Orana region.
"I am incredibly excited to be joining Charles Sturt University in this unique role.”
Charles Sturt’s other Directors of External Engagement are Ms Kate Wood-Foye at Port Macquarie, Ms Julia Andrews at Orange and Bathurst, and Ms Samantha Beresford at Wagga Wagga and Albury-Wodonga.