Cycling, Ambassador, Consultant
WHAT I DO...
I've been lucky to get involved in all kinds of things within the cycling world, and if you had told me I'd be doing what I do now back in 2011 when I started out on my bike, I would never believe you...
This Girl Can VIC
In 2019 I was chosen as an Ambassador for the VicHealth This Girl Can VIC campaign. As a representative of 'real' women getting active regardless of age, shape, size I was honoured to be chosen. The role continues into 2021 and I couldn't be more excited to help more women be inspired to move and get active.
I just love a bike company who sees that Ambassadors for their brand don't have to be elite athletes or be smashing records on their bike everyday. Since 2014 Specialized has been so generous in their support of Wheel Women, providing riders with membership incentives and always supporting me in my mission to get more women riding!
The network of Specialized stores in Melbourne, Australia has supported us and our members with great bikes to help women find the joy in riding.
Jean Hailes For Women's Health
Since 2018 I have acted as an Ambassador for Jean Hailes For Women's Health, Australia's foremost women's health organisation for education, health outcomes for women and advocacy in the women's health sector. A non-profit organisation, each year Jean Hailes organises Women's Health Week in an effort to engage more women in taking the time for some self-care, getting the tests they need and to help women understand there is help available.
Wheel Women is 'my baby'...started from nothing in 2012, my aim was to simply find other women to ride with, teach others the skills I had learned on my path to riding bikes and to create a welcoming place for women to learn. We've become an award winning organisation and since inspired 1,000's of women to grab their old bikes out of the shed to get riding! It's been an amazing ride so far!
Wheel Women has been the recipient of many awards, including the VicSport Best Outdoor Active Recreation Program. It is acknowledgement for the work we have put in to create a truly engaging program to help women start out on their riding journey.
My dream of helping women realise that bikes are a window to adventure came to fruition with the first Wheel Women Japan Tour in 2016. Since then we have run 5 tours which encompass the Hiroshima region, travelling across the Shimanami Kaido, Tobishima Kaido and side visits to Kyoto and Tokyo. The cultural exchange that occurs between cyclists from Australia and Japan is about building bridges...on bikes.
I can speak some Japanese and have been a student of Japanese language for some years and have attained Intermediate level. I'm also an accredited Tour Guide with Tour Guides Australia and love nothing more than guiding on a bike!
Consulting about inbound tourism, cycling advocacy and safety as well as participating in monitor tours has become and increasingly important role as my knowledge about travel in Japan as a cyclist grows. Providing input on how local and government organisations can attract an international cycling market, provide better for women cycling tourists and understand the needs of inbound cycling tourists has become a key role in what I can do to assist Japan inbound tourism..
I have consulted with Hiroshima Prefectural Government, Setouchi Tourism DMO, Tobishima Kaido development, and Tottori Prefecture. I have participated in monitor tours for Kita Hiroshima, Tomonoura city and Cycling Golden route developed by Hiroshima, Ehime, Okinawa and Shiga Prefectures. Since the COVID outbreak I have participated in monitor online tours for Setouchi DMO.
My past career as a Graphic Designer and Creative Director in the advertising world gave me many experiences to understand the world from the end users experience. Understanding the needs of the client, or the cyclist, means living in that world and experiencing what the market wants and needs. Coming up with new cycling kit designs has helped me keep the creativity flowing and also the skills current.
As the director of Wheel Women I have the fun job of creating all the marketing, kit design and logos as well as some videos. Because of my love of Japan and understanding of Japanese design I have recently had requests to design a sake label for the Australian market and some sake event logos to engage locals in a truly Japanese activity.
Get a Little Crazy...
Cycling has changed my life...it's meant fitness, good health, a way to combat health issues and the upshot is it's great for my mental health. One of the bonuses of running Wheel Women is that it allows me the pleasure to get a little crazy sometimes, engage in activities that make me laugh, bring others happiness and laughter and most of all fills my days with so much FUN. Though some may think it's all about the bike, I think it's really about making the most of every day.
Cycling means being in the moment and appreciating every second we have...and if that means dressing up as a ninja cyclist, well I'll be in that!
Graphic Design & Art Direction
I still have a passion for good design and since my first study tour to Japan as a design student I have been obsessed with the simplicity yet complexity of great Japanese design. Because of my familiarity with Japan, I have often been asked if I will assist businesses with design for their Japanese products...it's a passion and always full of challenges.
The excitement to produce a label for a sake brand direct from Niigata Prefecture was amazing. The sake, to be sold to the Australian market, came with challenges but also a brief for 'fun and celebration' for this mini bottle of sparkles. It tastes great...looks even better so the client said!