As the SBDC’s governing body, the Board has responsibility for performing the functions set out in the Small Business Development Corporation Act 1983.

The Board meets on a monthly basis to consider issues relevant to the direction and operation of the Corporation.

The SBDC Board has four strategic roles:

  1. Direction of the organisation.
  2. Determination of standards.
  3. Coordination of planning, policies, and decision-making frameworks.
  4. Acting in an advisory capacity to the minister, the government and other agencies.

Operational roles of the Board include:

  • setting strategies
  • focusing on client service and customer needs
  • striving for organisational best practice and compliance with standards
  • delegation of operational decision-making to officers within the SBDC.

Grant Cucel - chair

Photo of SBDC Board Chair Grant Cucel.

Mr Cucel is self-employed and Pilbara born and raised.

He has an extensive business background having run his own recruitment business for 10 years. Mr Cucel has a Bachelor of Business Degree (First Class Honours) from Curtin University of Technology.

He was the 2012 inductee into the Western Australian Regional Small Business Hall of Fame and was recognised as the 2013 City of Karratha Citizen of the Year. For nine years, he held the role of chair of the Small Business Centre West Pilbara and strongly advocated for small and medium enterprises in regional Western Australia. He is a former Deputy Mayor for the City of Karratha where he promoted economic development and diversification.

Mr Cucel, having sold his recruitment business to a publicly listed company, now has a strong focus on assisting a cross section of organisations in a voluntary capacity.

Danelle Cross

Photo of SBDC Board member Danelle Cross.

Danelle Cross was appointed to the Board in July 2019. Ms Cross is co-owner/director of a small business, Gourmet and More, a gourmet food wholesaler and distributor.

Ms Cross is an experienced and respected leader in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship and learning & development. She is currently the Director of Entrepreneurship at Curtin University, where she leads programs, pathways and community for local and global entrepreneurs. Prior to this, Ms Cross was the Director of Discovery at St Hilda’s Anglican School, leading a whole-of-school approach to in-curriculum entrepreneurship.

Ms Cross holds a Bachelor of Commerce, double major in marketing and PR from Curtin University. She is a mentor and connector for a number of WA business founders.

Anthony Masi

Photo of SBDC Board member Anthony Masi.

Anthony Masi was appointed to the Board in April 2014. Mr Masi is a pharmacist and has owned and operated successful small businesses in regional WA since 1991. These include a camera store, a health food shop, an IGA grocery store and two pharmacies. He is a former board member of Kimberley Pilbara Medicare Local and is a Branch Committee Member of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia (WA Branch).

Mr Masi is also an active member of the Kyle Andrews Foundation, a Broome based children’s cancer charity.

Cindy Hurst

Photo of SBDC Board member Cindy Hurst.

Cindy Hurst was appointed to the Board in September 2020. Ms Hurst has owned and operated her own small business, Goldfields Chiropractic and Healing Centre in Kalgoorlie since early 2009. Ms Hurst holds a Bachelor of Science (Chiropractic) and Bachelor of Chiropractic from Murdoch University, along with Certificates III and IV in Fitness and a post graduate certification in International Sports Chiropractic.

She was the recipient of the Kalgoorlie Boulder Chamber of Commerce and Industry Young Achiever Award in 2009 and a finalist in the WA Regional Small Business Awards, community engagement category in 2017. Ms Hurst is a member of a number of not for profit boards in the Goldfields region and maintains strong affiliations with multiple community and sporting organisations.

Gillian Nathan

Photo of SBDC Board member Gillian Nathan.

Gillian Nathan was appointed to the Board in October 2021. Ms Nathan is the founder and owner of a tax and accounting practice, Simple Solutions Accounting Services.

Ms Nathan has extensive experience in taxation, financial and management reporting and works daily with small business owners. Prior to starting her own business, she gained experience in the public and private sector working across a range of accounting and tax practices.

Ms Nathan is a Chartered Accountant, with a Masters in Taxation and International Tax. She is a Tax Agent, a South African tax practitioner and a qualified secondary school teacher, registered to teach in Western Australia. Ms Nathan is a board member for Financial Toolbox, a not for profit organisation which aims to build the financial knowledge and skills of Western Australian women, and volunteers on a number of school and sporting committees.

Eliza Carbines

Photo of SBDC Board member Eliza Carbines.

Eliza Carbines was appointed to the Board in October 2021. Ms Carbines is Karratha-based and is the founder and CEO of Tender Relief which offers tailored support, training and consulting services to businesses, primarily in regional Western Australia.

Prior to commencing her own business, Ms Carbines worked in various roles across both the state government and private sectors.

Ms Carbines holds Association of Proposal Management Professionals (APMP) Foundation and Practitioner Certification and is the current Chair of the APMP ANZ Committee. She is a strong advocate for entrepreneurism and economic diversity throughout regional Western Australia and has served on a number of not for profit boards.

Michael Schaper

Photo of SBDC Board member Michael Schaper.

Michael Schaper was appointed to the Board in June 2022. Dr Schaper is an experienced company director, educator, researcher and consultant on small business issues, both in Australia and internationally.

Dr Schaper served as the inaugural Deputy Chair (small business) of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, where he also founded the national Small Business Commissioners Forum, and was the Small Business Commissioner for the ACT. Michael was also the foundation Professor of Small Business and Entrepreneurship at the University of Newcastle NSW, and prior to this he was responsible for the small business program at Curtin University.

A former president of the Small Enterprise Association of Australia and New Zealand, Dr Schaper also served as a Director of the International Council for Small Business. His current and recent work includes advising international bodies such as the UN and Asian Development Bank on SME policy issues.

He is a board member of the Gaming and Wagering Commission of WA, Chair of the Energy and Water Ombudsman WA, Chair of the ATO’s shadow economy advisory forum, and member of the national board of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Dr Schaper holds a Doctor of Philosophy in small business management and a Master of Commerce degree from Curtin University, as well as a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Australia.


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