It was a University assignment in water treatment that inspired Stacey to start a water career. Now, with over 15 years of industry experience, Stacey leads the Membrane Treatment team at Water Corporation in Perth.
“My role touches every aspect of life. It’s work with real purpose that resonates with my values – you don’t find that in many other industries.”
A thirst for knowledge
She quickly found her feet in the world of water and advanced her career as a leading scientist through networking and career-defining opportunities.
“Networking has been so powerful for my career. There are so many opportunities out there if you’re willing to go out and talk to people.”
In an industry where continuous learning and diversity of thought are celebrated, Stacey felt right at home.
“My thirst for knowledge is always supported. It’s my job to provide state-wide treatment support and advice, but I can always jump into different areas like finance, commissioning, media, or strategic planning.”
Leading by nature
That same curiosity and love for learning led her to become the technical expert behind Australia’s first full-scale groundwater replenishment scheme – recycling wastewater into drinking water for Perth.
“It doesn’t rain in Perth as often as people think. We need to change our mindset and see wastewater as a resource instead.”
Her pioneering work has inspired nationwide change in the industry and it’s just one example of how the water sector is working towards a sustainable water future.
Rising to the challenge
Right now, the water industry is experiencing rapid growth and transformation as climate change, ageing assets and our growing population create new challenges to solve. And it couldn’t be a more exciting time to work in water.
“We’re always adapting to new technology which means we need new skillsets in data and AI – skills that we’ve never had to think about before and jobs that didn’t exist 40 years ago.”
It's challenges like these that drive exciting innovations and unparalleled industry collaboration in water – across Australia and abroad.
Going beyond Australia
Stacey knew that to create real change for our water future, she needed to look beyond Australia to understand international best practice. She was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship to do exactly that. As the only water-based project out of 84 fellows in Australia (in 2022), she’s inspired to help all water companies rethink the way they recycle and treat water.
“I’m excited to see what’s out there – new innovations, new technologies. We’re always looking for ways to be better and when I’m back, I’ll share my learnings with other water companies across Australia. I can already see the impact I can possibly have nationwide.”
People making progress, together
Stacey believes that everyone in water brings different ideas, perspectives and thought patterns which allows them to innovate.
“What surprised me about working in water are the people. Everyone here is so open to learn from each other and share knowledge.
“We all have a similar purpose, to make things better for future generations, so we’re not afraid to talk about our failures and solve problems together.”
As one of many highly regarded female STEM leaders in the industry, she’s proving that a STEM career is for everybody. Like many water organisations, Water Corporation champions a diverse workforce that truly represents the communities they serve. They’ve even been recognised as one of the top and most inclusive employers in Australia.