Patricia Marsland does not suffer fools easily and right from the first time she introduced herself at a City of Victor Harbor council meeting one knew this lady was going to be an asset to the city.
Patricia made a deputation to elected members and council administration on a new vision for Victor Harbor, which had everybody sit up and take notice. Her vision was for a cultural and arts precinct to be established in Victor Harbor.
“Community growth and economic prosperity delivered through an arts and culture industry has proved rewarding throughout Australia. A promise particularly evident in communities such as Victor Harbor, which has the natural resources, current infrastructure and local skills to develop such an industry through tourism and local involvement,” Patricia said.
“Changing hearts and minds and introducing change is a difficult road to travel.”
Having worked in senior roles nationally and internationally in non-profit businesses, Patricia comes from generations of community workers.
From the First Fleet to the current generation, Patricia’s family has served their communities consistently.
Patricia has herself received awards for her own work.
“It’s probably in the blood, if we can’t be involved in our community’s wellbeing and our own enjoyment of life, then why are we here? If you are able, there are important issues to be raised, discussed and developed,” Patricia said.
Patricia’s focus in Victor Harbor, since she arrived back to South Australia six years ago, has been the absence of a cultural industry developed from the arts.
“It is hard to understand that we have under utilised heritage buildings and the potential to deliver people and tourist dollars to the local businesses through an Arts development program.
“It is still a fight for those council administrators, who understand the potential and those elected members who are behind it - and for the volunteers to make it happen.”
Patricia’s business knowledge comes from many years of both heading up and on the Boards of significant organisations in the education and arts sectors.
She has owned her own business and chaired community service organisations.
Patricia currently sits on the Economic Development and Tourism Committee of council, is on the committee of the National Trust Victor Harbor and volunteers in several other organisations in Victor Harbor.
“This town is wonderful. We have so many volunteers giving up their time for the betterment of Victor Harbor,” she said.