Wesfarmers announces 2017 RAP award winner

Desmond Roche has been recently recognised by Australia’s largest private sector employer, Wesfarmers Limited.

Mr Roche, who works as a Category Specialist for Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy & Fertilisers won the prestigious Wesfarmers 2017 Reconciliation Action Plan Champion Award, for his outstanding contribution in increasing the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people employed by contractors, Programmed, Carlton Contracting and Taylor’s Engineering.

Working in partnership with Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy & Fertilisers Aboriginal Development Consultant Noelene Mantellato, Mr Roche facilitated a Creating Opportunities event at CSBP Kwinana to engage the major on-site contractors.

The event showcased best practice on how contractors could build relationships with the community, develop culturally respectful processes and create Aboriginal employment opportunities.

Mr Roche said he was very proud with the interest shown at the event.

“The result exceeded my expectations. We now have 15 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people engaged by contractors including three trainees and 12 shutdown crew members,” he said.

Ms Mantellato, said hosting events such as Creating Opportunities, enables employees to have a positive impact on the Reconciliation Action Plan.

“It’s through tireless efforts of champions like Desmond, that we can contribute to creating sustainable employment opportunities for Aboriginal people,” she said.

Based on the success of the first spotlight event, Desmond is planning a second event on 28 November with another five  contactors to generate more employment opportunities for the local community.

Wesfarmers employs more than 4,200 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander team members across its Australian workforce.

Fact file

  • Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy & Fertilisers is part of the Wesfarmers Industrials Division.
  • The Wesfarmers RAP Award recognises employees who have moved beyond their day-to-day role to champion actions aligned with Wesfarmers Reconciliation Action Plan pillars: building relationships, building respect and creating opportunities.


Media contact: Justin Manning 0429 543 148 or email jmanning@wescef.com.au