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Yarra Valley Water’s Rising Star shines at HR Awards

Yarra Valley Water’s Senior People Partner Rachel Speirs has been recognised as one of the top professionals in Australia’s HR industry. Ms Speirs has been listed in the 2022 edition of Human Resources Director’s (HRD) Rising Stars report.

In August 2018, she joined Yarra Valley Water and jumped from HR Business Partner to Senior HR Business Partner within 12 months.

Since then, Ms Speirs has taken the Diversity and Inclusion portfolio to another level and helped grow the organisation from having a diversity lens to being focussed on truly creating an inclusive culture.  

As Senior People Partner, Rachel has led the company’s diversity and inclusion strategy, and is recognised as a trusted advisor of Yarra Valley Water’s Pride network. In 2021, she established the water utility’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

Ms Speirs said she was honoured and humbled to accept the accolade.

“I’m really humbled and honoured to receive this award. A sincere thanks to my colleagues for the nomination,” she said. “I'm grateful to HRD for continuing to highlight the contributions of emerging talent in our industry.”

One of her biggest achievements has been leading Yarra Valley Water’s first Gender Equality Action Plan. This has led to initiatives such as a remuneration review of senior employees aimed at closing the gender pay gap, increasing flexible working arrangements and providing above national standard leave entitlements for parental leave.

General Manager People, Performance and Culture Amy Singe said Rachel is the perfect example of what a good HR leader should be.

“Rachel is smart, strategic, and business focussed as well as being empathetic and a great listener. She quickly moved up the ranks because she works hard and delivers exceptional results for our business.”

“These are some of the most prestigious HR awards in Australia, and it's so great to see Rachel recognised for her role-modelling and strong work ethic. She is an exceptional HR professional who continues to go from strength to strength in her career.”

For the full list of Australian HRD Rising Stars, head to the HRD website.