Rural passion a family tradition

Tiffany DaveyCountryman
Dowerin Events Management board member and Elders Dowerin farm supplies manager Courtney Strang.
Camera IconDowerin Events Management board member and Elders Dowerin farm supplies manager Courtney Strang. Credit: Tiffany Davey

One of Courtney Strang’s earliest memories is sitting on a plough disc and being towed behind a ute by her three sisters on her family farm at Watheroo.

It was the sense of togetherness from her rural upbringing and the and values, instilled by watching her parents volunteer and be involved in the community, that ensured she would become a leader in regional Australia.

She now lives in Dowerin and is a board member with Dowerin Events Management, which runs Dowerin GWN7 Machinery Field Days.

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Ms Strang is a force to be reckoned with on the hockey field and has held executive positions with Dowerin Hockey Club and East Avon Hockey Association.

“It all started with Mum; she was passionate about hockey but both my parents were very involved in their communities,” she said.

“I have also always been surrounded by strong women, being one of four girls, and Mum being a source of inspiration”.

Ms Strang, who works at Elders Dowerin as the farm supplies manager, believes volunteering is generational.

She credits her parents’ involvement in the community for her finding volunteering “second nature”.

It is something she and her husband, Kim, hope to instil in their two-year-old daughter Billie.

Ms Strang credits the encouragement of other people around her for helping her find her feet in the volunteering world.

She would love to see more volunteers, women, in particular.

Originally from Watheroo, Ms Strang studied agricultural science at the University of WA and worked at the Pastoralists and Graziers Association in Perth.

It was her career with Elders that brought her to Dowerin 12 years ago. While she later married a local farmer, Ms Strang’s love for regional Australia had already cemented her to the region.

Holding the fort at the Elders exhibit each year meant Ms Strang was initially unable to volunteer during the two days of Dowerin GWN7 Machinery Field Days.

However, she knew she wanted to get involved because of the cohesiveness it bought to the town.

In 2014, Ms Strang was approached and asked to join the board of directors.

She found herself in the thick of running the organisation, on a board of 10.

“I understood what was involved, and figured it was a local show times 10,” Ms Strang said.

“But you can’t comprehend the logistics assoc-iated with the event and the decision-making made by the board unless you are involved.”

Ms Strang says it is “the people” which keep her coming back to the event year.

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