Autumn 2005

Businesswoman Cathryn Wood from Brookton was thrilled to
receive the WA Business Owner Award category at the Telstra
Business Women’s Award in late 2004 which also qualified
her as the National Finalist in that category. With a
background in health education, training and hospitality,
Cathryn has transformed an ordinary roadhouse into an
integral part of not only the Brookton Community but also
the Avon region.
Cathryn Wood has been the owner and operator of Stumpy’s
Gateway Roadhouse since she moved to Brookton, 90
kilometres south east of Perth, in May 1999 with her
husband and two young children seeking a better
environment and lifestyle. Since taking over the business,
Cathryn has successfully steered the roadhouse through a
period of economic volatility for the fuel reselling/convenience
store industry.
Prior to coming to Brookton, Cathryn was the training cocoordinator
for the School of Public Health at Curtin
University where she developed and delivered two training
courses. Healthy Catering was designed to improve the
nutritional quality of food from commercial kitchens. The
second course, Food Service Planning for Long Day Care
Centres, was designed to improve the nutritional quality of
food served to 1–5 year olds.
After qualifying as a chef in 1987, Cathryn travelled and
worked throughout Australia, Europe and Malaysia. On
returning home, she joined a training company where she
consulted to 300 Western Australian hospitality
establishments completing a degree in Training and
Development with Edith Cowan University in 1998.
In addition to the roadhouse business, Cathryn has
developed CaterNet, her own brand of snack foods that
offer the traveling public a healthier alternative in ready-toeat
products. These products are currently being distributed
throughout the Southwest with preparations in place to
expand distribution throughout Western Australia. She is
also developing a 16–20 room motel complex to become
part of the Roadhouse.
Whilst in Brookton, Cathryn has been involved with several
community projects. She is currently on the Brookton Shire
Council where she is committed to creating a positive social
and economic future for her community.
Telstra Business Women’s Award entrants were judged on
their professional achievements, business management
skills, leadership skills and their future goals.
“I felt very honoured when I won the award. My husband
and my team here at the road house also deserve a huge
credit,” said Cathryn.
As a winner of a Telstra Business Women’s Award, Cathryn
aims to inspire and give hope to small businesses operators
in remote and regional towns, especially those in towns
with diminishing populations. She would like to encourage
other small businesses to spend as much money as they
can locally and regionally, to invest in their community so
the community can invest in them.
Cathryn believes small business owners should be the
leaders in their communities, encouraging people to become
involved in the community and support the whole
community concept like past generations.
“I would strongly encourage all women to take
a chance on themselves and have a go at the
Telstra Business Women’s Awards. I was so
proud to bring the award home to regional
Western Australia and I have my list of people
to nominate for the 2005 Awards so that
hopefully we can keep it in regional
Western Australia.”
Cathyrn aims to use the profile given to her by the awards
to fight for the infrastructure needed to keep small regional
communities viable and to ensure small businesses have
the framework to build a positive future.