Australian basketball icon, Bob Turner, said he was excited to take on his next career challenge as CEO of BREED Australia. “I am very honoured and privileged to have been appointed to head up BREED. The Board of BREED is focussed on a State and National extension to divert the business of BREED solely from its Blacktown base. The Boards future ambition is to become a facilitator of change, in particular in disadvantaged communities, which was a key factor in my decision to sign a long-term contract and I welcome the challenge to start breeding new beginnings”, Bob Turner said.
BREED has a 21-year history and its Blacktown roots have set solid foundation stones working solely in one of Australia’s most challenging and diverse Councils. BREED’s mission has made a difference to thousands of young lives in the Blacktown region providing work placements and brokering partnerships with business in the area to improve year 12 attainment and transition into post-further education or employment.
Through a long-standing connection with TAFE NSW, BREED’s home base and cornerstone has been the BREED Business Centre (BBC) located in the Nirimba Education Precinct. The BBC has been a true incubator providing a low cost and supportive office environment in which businesses in Blacktown can start-up and grow, develop entrepreneurial skills to become self-sustaining, and expand their customer base to create new jobs in their business. The BBC currently has 34 offices leased plus another 20 virtual tenants and has hosted over 150 start-up or small businesses over the past 21 years. Recently, the BBC has expanded to provide training room and Hot Desk facilities for its tenants to facilitate their programmes. The BBC has also developed the ‘Bottom Line’ series to foster business acumen, the IT Lab to bring mainstream youth together with youth on the spectrum and the ‘Young Entrepreneur Programme’ (YEP) in partnership with Set 2 Learn.
BREED’s future will be that of a ‘Community Innovator’ acting to foster programmes and a continued ‘Trust’ in the organisation! BREED will now use its history to generate and nurture new concepts in education, employment and economic development on a local, state, national and international level. The corporate, philanthropic and donation channels will be accelerated through BREED’s recent tax deductibility status as a charity.
“My role is to take BREED beyond Blacktown and create new business opportunities to capitalise on its history and combined Charity and Not for Profit status. In the 1990’s I worked hard to put the Sydney Kings on the sporting map through a combination of fan experience, marketing and most importantly a belief, and I plan on building BREED along the same principles”, Turner said. “BREED has done great work in our community and I will bring the vision, energy and passion that I am known for to drive the Boards agenda to move away from the traditional business model of an NFP organisation to one that is dynamic, progressive and on the cusp of expansion. I also have a vision to engage youth through sport as a vehicle to achieve further education and or employment. Sport has proven to me over a 41-year career that it helps build character, ambition and skills and combined with education will be a winner”, he added.
Bob Turner has a proven track record throughout his career of high performance as a player, administrator, marketer and coach. Following a stint at the Newcastle Falcons, Turner coached the Canberra Cannons to back to back championships in 1983 and 1984, put the Sydney Kings on the map and was the driving force behind the Singapore Slingers. More recently Bob Turner has been Chairman of the Sydney Blue Sox and Sportstek.
Nathan Burbridge, President of BREED said it was a real coup to have secured Bob Turner as the organisations CEO, “Bob not only brings a wealth of experience to BREED Australia; he is impressed by our story and achievements over the past 21 years. Bob understands that for us to become a facilitator of catalytic change for disadvantaged communities; we must broaden our approach and reach”, said Nathan. “Change cannot be achieved by any one organisation alone. Our role is to bring with us partners who help deliver the change a community wants. We want after all to facilitate something significant in each community we work with; that is our vision and with Bob as our lead, we are confident of achieving it”, he added.