This last financial year was a rapid period of change for the NSW division of the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA), the public sector and the broader environment in which we work. At IPAA NSW, our focus is on building a stronger organisation by expanding the depth and breadth of memberships across the public sector. This allows our Association to leverage one of the key values that members often describe as their reason for joining the Association: networking and connecting with peers and leaders in the public sector.
In 2015 we began a new model of membership, partnering with Clusters and Agencies, where those partners allocated professional and affiliate memberships to a designated number of their staff.
This was an initiative of John Carnegie, our outgoing Chief Executive Officer (CEO). I'd like to pay tribute to John's indomitable enterprise and dedication for instituting this new model of membership and two more significant digital initiatives while at the helm of IPAA NSW: establishing our thought leadership platform, Ignite, and our online training platform Illuminate.
The results of that work are evident in this annual report. Last year more than 1,290 people attended our programs and professional development opportunities. We ran more than 94 courses and our hosting of the national conference brought together more than 475 delegates and 52 speakers. Our website attracted more than 29,960 unique visitors and we were able to offer a range of new digital services for members, including online access to the national conference.
As a professional association run by and for our members, IPAA NSW does not seek to generate large surpluses. Nevertheless, prudence demands that we budget to be independently financial, as well as to build up a reserve that allows us to develop innovative ideas and ride out short-term changes in our operating environment. It was therefore pleasing to see that the financial report includes a surplus of $178,408 on a turnover of more than $4,000,000.
I am also pleased to welcome Madeleine Culbert to the position of CEO. I wish Madeleine a successful term in this role and I'm confident her management skills and fresh vision will lead IPAA NSW to new levels and in turn strengthen IPAA nationally.
I would also like to acknowledge the committed and dedicated IPAA NSW staff and the continuing contributions of my colleagues on Council. The reputation of IPAA NSW is a direct result of the contributions of their work, as well as the support we receive from our personal members, our cluster corporate members and our supporting partners.
President, IPAA NSW