Councils high achievers - This month from Campbelltown City Council, New South Wales
With 20 years of leadership experience, Justine Uluibau is well respected within Campbelltown City Council.
Presently, Uluibau holds the role of Acting Director of Community Services, whilst her substantive position is Manager Education and Care Services.
Uluibau was nominated to be an Local Government Focus High Achiever by Campbelltown Mayor Paul Lake; Uluibau’s commitment to ensuring she is accessible to all staff, transparent leadership, and infectious optimism were cited as some of her key attributes.
“I like to collaborate with peers and colleagues and continually learn new things and enhance my own development,” Uluibau told Local Government Focus.
Campbelltown City Council is located 45 kilometres south west of Sydney.
It has a population of 156,000 and was recently given a regional city status.
As Manager Education and Care Services at Campbelltown, Uluibau has been responsible for the overall operation of council owned and operated childcare services.
This includes leading a multi-disciplinary team of up to 150 staff in various offsite locations within the community.
A particular success cited by Uluibau was when the Amarina Early Learning Centre – situated in the Airds public housing estate – was awarded the first Excellent rating in NSW for education and care services in November 2013.
“At the time Amarina was the fifth service in the country and the first Local Government service to have achieved this rating,” Uluibau said.
“The team at Amarina work very hard within their local community and for the community and the team to have this recognition was very rewarding, and is an absolute highlight of my career.
“This highlighted the high quality and holistic approach that Campbelltown takes pride in providing for its community.”
In January this year, Uluibau became Acting Director for Community Services, which she said presents a new set of challenges.
“I have had a steeper learning curve; learning the business of all sections within the division, developing a directorate strategy whilst supporting my management team through the organisational transformation.”
The role oversees eight key operational sections within the organisation including Communications and Marketing, Education and Care Services, Healthy Lifestyles, Library Services, Cultural Services, Customer Service and Business Improvement.
Uluibau has also worked in mentorship roles over the past five years, including in Council’s Springboard program, which aims to professionally develop women within the organisation, and also in a newly established mentor program that involved working with mentees in other countries, including Nepal and India.
Uluibau said she enjoys implementing her leadership skills in a range of areas, and said she most enjoys “the diversity within each day and each week” that her role allows.
“I can be meeting with staff, meeting with elected members or meeting with the community. I also love the fact that I work in my own municipality and I feel a great sense of pride.”
Uluibau said engaging with the public is one of her key focuses in the community services division.
“I am passionate about the community and working with them and bringing them along for the journey with us.
“We are always trying to ensure that our community is aware that we are more than roads rates and rubbish.
“There is so much more in what Council provides to our community and we want to take them on our new journey as we grow and as Campbelltown becomes so much more in terms of economic and infrastructure development, cultural diversity and services to our community.”