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Introducing Di Tornai - CoS Councillor

Di Tornai was elected as a Councilor of the City of Sydney Council on the Clover Moore Independents ticket and below we reproduce an Introduction to her as a candidate from Clover's enews of Friday 8 August 2008 - No. 409.


Di Tornai will stand with me as part of the Clover Moore Independent Team at the Local Council Elections. Di is committed to strengthening the representation of the southern areas of the City and apartment residents.

Currently Vice-Chair of the Victoria Park Community Group, Di works as a consultant specialising in organisational development and management for community organisations, including work with owners' corporations managing large apartment blocks.

Di has over 30 years professional experience in lobbying for services to meet the needs of the community and in managing non-government organisations specialising in disability services. She has served on numerous government and industry focus groups and task forces, developing a national profile for her systemic advocacy with the Departments of Family and Community Services and Employment and Workplace Relations, in particular improving the access of people with disabilities to employment services.

Her employment experience includes University of NSW Global, Spinal Cord Injuries Australia and the Autistic Association. She is also a foundation member of Association Competitive Employment (ACE), a peak body which established a national industry network for over 400 independent community-based organisations that held Government contracts as specialist employment agencies.

Di's professional and community experience provides her with a solid foundation to be an effective Councillor representing the City's diverse communities.

Di Tornai writes:

"In recent years my career has shifted its focus to strata  residential development after realising there had been an evolution in  the way people were living in the city.

"Due to trends associated with a global city, and the adoption of  urban consolidation policies and strategies such as the Metropolitan  Strategy, more than 60 per cent of the City's residents now live in  apartments.

"Enormous potential exists to influence and develop "community" in  these vertical villages.

"Since establishing Strata Community Development, I've provided input  into Owners Corporations improving governance models. After all, it's  essentially a fourth tier of government! The skills of the Executive  Committees and the competence of the Strata Managers they engage are  keys to maintaining the success of this community.

"Executive Committees have been keen, through information and skill  development, to ensure better understanding of their role and  responsibilities. This has also involved training in areas such as  contract negotiation, managing contractors and promoting environmental  consciousness within apartment buildings - incorporating  sustainability practices such as stormwater harvesting, green energy,  waste minimisation, and the possibilities presented by green roofs.

"This change in the face of the City means there is potential for  enormous impact. It's important to engage the broader community in  this conversation-to inform, explore and influence future directions  in planning and development.

"Through being a candidate with Clover Moore's Independent Team, I  hope to promote this dialogue. Clover has been a strong advocate on  behalf of apartment residents, working for better building and living  standards and effective management of multistorey apartments.

"An increasing number of these apartments are in the City's southern  areas. Victoria Park Community Group promotes the importance of good  building management to maintaining the quality of apartment buildings  within Victoria Park and its reputation as benchmark example of urban  renewal. As a component of the Green Square Urban Renewal Project  Victoria Park exemplifies the principles embodied in this exciting and  courageous plan.

"As a Councillor, I believe I can represent southern Sydney communities to ensure the redevelopment of Green Square is sustainable  and meets the needs of current and future residents."