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Wed Sep 7 2022

Rose Lacoon Williamson
Executive Director, Non-binary entrepreneur and Innovator 

When your purpose is on track, you’re always moving toward your mission. That’s the case with Rose Lacoon Williamson. Melinda met her over 10 years ago when Rose was managing hospitality in the East End before a massive career shift led her to her current role.

Rose is a charismatic people person. She was always en route to do great things by helping others. It was inspiring yet unsurprising when Rose began working with unique students as Executive Director of Youth Inc. Learning Exchange. Youth Inc. is an independent senior secondary school in the Adelaide CBD. Its focus is creating safe and supportive learning environments for disengaged and diverse young people, who may feel left behind by traditional systems.

Rose holds a Bachelor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Ever purpose-driven, she has led programs to develop the SA Purpose Economy and Social Sector and also serves as a volunteer on the Social Impact Investment Network SA Board. Rose is also Founder and Director of Topsoil Garden Project, a horticultural therapy garden and health offering in the Adelaide Hills, tackling the social isolation of people with psychosocial disability.

Rose approached us in early 2021 to develop the Youth Inc. and Youth Inc. Exchange websites. To bring-in our “Oranje-power” as Rose calls it. We ended up creating one of our favourite pieces of work and refreshing Youth Inc.’s brand.

Now Rose is undertaking more projects aiming to develop new, innovative learning pathways for marginalised youth. These include: Tauondi Aboriginal College – seeking to establish an innovative Aboriginal school design for young people looking for a new way to learn; and now, New Urban Green School at the former Le Cornu site – a future-focused school campus that has regenerative education at its core. The green school will bring students to the Forestville site as active citizens engaged in hands-on, real-world education and employment as they chart a life that is meaningful to them.

And Oranje is thrilled to be on the journey. As a Youth Inc. supporter, we’re creating collateral for many of these projects, at our giving-back fee. We believe part of our purpose is to support women in creative industries, leading to better outcomes for all.

On working together, Rose said, “That is the nature of women and non-binary entrepreneurs, we are highly networked and ultimately opt to provide opportunities for each other.” We couldn’t agree more and are excited for what the future holds alongside Rose.