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Southbanker

06 Nov 2019

Southbanker Image

Watching work come to life

Building up to the 2012 London Olympics, horticulturalists transformed the performing arts centre and Olympics precinct with fields of flowers.

Laura Kerr Melvin worked in communications for the Olympics and witnessed the project take form. Now, living dozens of floors above Southbank, she can see her current work taking shape too.

“I’ve been working for Committee For Melbourne (CFM) for a year and the work the committee does with the arts and culture taskforce is a passion project for me, particularly with the redevelopment of the Arts Precinct,” Laura said.

“I can’t wait to see the project bring Southbank and the Arts Precinct to life with new and renewed public space and enabling us to move seamlessly from Southbank and the Yarra through Melbourne’s iconic St Kilda Rd cultural institutions.”

CFM is a member-based organisation lobbying for the future of Melbourne. Its members are the biggest names around town. Notable Southbankers include NGV, the Melbourne Theatre Company, the Royal Botanic Gardens, the Australian Ballet and Arts Centre Melbourne.

She had previously worked for Parks Victoria on a trial of eco-friendly accommodation in national parks. She lived alone for four months in Point Nepean National Park and was recommended for her current role at CFM when it wrapped up.

Before that, she had worked in London, Spain, New Zealand and Costa Rica.

“I had worked and travelled a lot so coming back and giving back to Melbourne, as cliché as it sounds, is why I decided to work for a not-for-profit for the community,” she said.

“The committee’s agenda is really varied and working in such a cross-sectoral organisation gives exposure to government, stakeholders, diplomats, consulting firms, engineers, architects, not-for-profit and university sectors.”

“It’s a really varied approach to communications.”

Laura was elected onto the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) board recently and said she’ll be sitting a professional certification exam next year that will explore her work around Melbourne and the world.

Laura and her partner Amit only moved to Southbank six weeks ago after spending a year in Richmond.

The CFM office is only a walk along the river toward Spring St from their Southbank apartment, while Amit works across the CBD at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

“We’re a newly engaged couple and kind of wanted to have one last hoorah living centrally – we love going out to gigs and to the Arts Centre, to the beach in Port Melbourne and out to dinner,” she said.

“I used to walk to work from Richmond, but walking along Southbank and even just watching the street performers is a very entertaining way to get from A to B.”

“You can see activations pop up, from here I can see that Flight Shipping Container that popped up and watching Arbory Afloat come to life on the river is pretty extraordinary.”

 

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