Committed to Change

Committed to Change
Retirement Living

As the new Chair of the Bentley Park Residents’ Council Bill Waterer is committed to inspiring people to get involved.

As part of various committees and councils his whole life Bill understands the important role that council’s play in small communities and is keen for his councillors to become better known by residents of the village.

“I’m keen to look at new opportunities for how we can involve the residents with the council more,” Bill said.

“We’re looking at a welcome program for new residents, and I’d like to make our councillors more visible. Quite often people don’t know who to turn to when they have a concern.

“For starters our eight councillors will wear hi-vis vests so everyone knows who they are, and one Friday a month a councillor will be at the leisure centre to answer people’s questions. We’re also looking to reintroduce buggy tours of the village to residents.”

Many people might not know that Bill was awarded the Order of Australia medal for services to the environment and endangered species. He worked hard to protect numbats and western ground parrots and is close personal friends with renowned chimpanzee expert and ethologist Dr Jane Goodall. He is the state coordinator for Jane’s Roots & Shoots program in Western Australia.

“Jane’s Roots & Shoots program is phenomenal because it lets children make decisions. The key to good committees, councils and foundations is to get people involved young, don’t say no to everything and let them have their say.”

Bill said he has a great group of councillors and is looking forward to working with them over the next 12 months.

“SwanCare is our community and if we don’t get involved, we haven’t got a community,” Bill said. “I’d encourage everyone to get involved, you’ll never know if you don’t have a go.

“We’ve always had a fantastic relationship with management and I want to strengthen that relationship going forward. We care about our village and where we live.”

Bentley Park Resident Council members

Bill Waterer – Chair
Awarded the Order of Australia medal, Bill has held many senior management roles and ran his own environmental business. He also worked to assist single mothers with disabled children access suitable wheelchair vehicles and support services and has a long history with Lion’s International, serving in every club and district position except District Governor. He was Club President three times and District Cabinet Secretary for three years. Bill was WA Coordinator and National Coordinator of The Orangutan Project for 10 years and is WA Coordinator and National Coordinator for the Jane Goodall Roots & Shoots program.

Carole Collins – Deputy Chair
Carole has been on the committee for the past 12 months and moved to the village two years ago. She nominated for the resident committee as she feels it’s important for residents to have an open line of communication with management. Carole is a retired nurse who worked for 50 years at hospitals and in the community in Australia and overseas. Carole is originally from New Zealand.

Ellen Clair - Councillor
Ellen worked in student counselling for most of her professional life, retiring in 2014 and has been a resident at the village for the past 10 years. She initiated the establishment of the
Bentley Park Garden’s Interest Group and has been a member of the Residents’ Council since 2016, holding Deputy Chair in 2018 and Chair from 2019-22. She said she enjoys being on the council and feels it has contributed to and improved communication between residents and management.

Roger Freeman - Councillor
A resident of the village for two years, Roger is a proud ‘Ten Pound Pom’ who arrived in Australia in 1966. A former Local Government CEO at Marble Bar, Trayning and Bridgetown, Roger has special interests in health, waterways and seniors. He has been involved in the Residents’ Council since 2021 as a councillor, board representative and is also part of the infrastructure group.

Val Kostic - Councillor
Val grew up in the remote mining towns of WA and arrived in Perth at age 16. Before she retired, she worked in education and psychology, developing an interest in the psychological management of chronic pain, and assisting her clients to manage it. Val has happily lived at the village for the past six years and became a member of the council in 2022.

Aileen Hooper - Councillor
Aileen is in her second term and finds it very rewarding to be part of the Bentley Park Residents’ Council. Previously, Aileen worked in the public sector and owned her own business before she retired and moved into SwanCare in 2015. She enjoys researching family history, painting with oils and loves a good detective novel.

Joan Hutchinson - Councillor
Joan has been a part of the Bentley Park Residents’ Council for the past year. In her earlier years, Joan grew up on a farm in southwest WA, went to boarding school before joiningTrans Australia Airlines (TAA) as an air hostess based in Melbourne and Brisbane. She continued her love of travel overseas working for a British airline based in London, travelling to Africa, Europe, and the far east. She returned home to commence nursing training, graduating as a registered nurse in Perth and studying midwifery in Sydney.

Margaret Jones - Councillor
Margaret has held various executive positions at committees and clubs, including being on the Board of Perth Women’s Health and secretary on the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of WA board. Before she retired, Margaret was a schoolteacher for 14 years. She gained a psychology degree at UWA as a mature age student before working as a registered psychologist for the next 23 years. Margaret volunteered at Perth Airport for 14 years, loves theatre, music, choreography, script writing and directing.

Thank you to Bill, and all the members of the Bentley Park Residents’ Council, for taking part in this story. We look forward to seeing what the committee will bring in 2023!


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