Who we are...

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Bec Bignell

Rural Room Editor

Bec grew up on a farm in regional Western Australia and has worked in film and media for twelve years, most recently at the ABC (Sydney) as Partnership Executive. She produced the exciting, new female series ‘600 Bottles of Wine’ and has multiple acting credits in stage, film and Television.

 

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Gabrielle Major

rural room deputy editor

Gab grew up on a farm in Kellerberrin in Western Australia’s wheatbelt. She studied a degree that spanned across PR, Events and Journalism and worked at the Albany Entertainment Centre before relocating to small regional town of Ravensthorpe. She currently works at the Community Resource Centre and is managing a very important regional sports initiative. She is mother to three young girls and in her spare time (!!) she’s the Deputy Editor of Rural Room.

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Clare Leake

rural room arts editor

Clare grew up on a family farm in Borden in the Great Southern region of WA. She completed her high school education as a boarder at Perth College where she graduated as School Captain. She was awarded a John Curtin Scholarship at Curtin University where she completed a Batchelor of Economics and Marketing. Clare commenced her professional career in banking with ANZ before moving into corporate advisory and in 2014, Clare relocated to London to assist Yonder & Beyond, a tech incubator to list on the ASX. In 2015 Clare returned to Perth, and married a farmer, relocating to Kellerberrin in the central wheatbelt where she now lives with their two children.


Letter from the editor,

The wide-open spaces and the amazing characters I met during my childhood in the country influenced a lifelong obsession with storytelling. My ambition has always been to return to the country to take film, media and the arts projects of the highest quality to share these fascinating stories and characters.

I developed Rural Room to connect country people through stories and creativity. The community is such a beautiful, thriving, positive space that continues to grow. The genuine appetite for these stories, was made clear through the energy and engagement of the Facebook page, and prompted me to resurrect a film I wrote at Uni after my holidays working in our shearing shed. I believe a real, raw Australian film from the bush is well overdue. Through this film, Rain Dance, we have pioneered an approach to filmmaking where we have developed it completely in partnership with the regional online community. The Rural Room community brings a critical eye to the development of Rain Dance and they do not tolerate regional stereotypes - they insist on genuine situations and an authentic representation of the diversity of people that populate the regions.

I've been working on Rain Dance for twelve months now and I’ve come back to the Great Southern Region in WA to bring it to life. As I move around the country I’m meeting some very talented regional people and I’ve connected with organisations that are world class and many which are globally connected. 

It amazes me that so much of this talent and experience is hidden. Fortunately, the Rural Room online community is helping connect these dots and bring these people and stories to light.

As Rural Room grows, we are starting to see some interesting things happen.  We are starting to get an idea of what interests the community, such as the lack of access to cultural and sporting facilities in the regions. We'd like to bring this to the attention of more people, and to see what we can do collectively.