I recently made the jump from the Victorian Australian Oracle User Group committee to the Western Australian AUSOUG committee, which presents a unique set of challenges in user group activities.
In Victoria as the local President I had presentations a plenty; it wasn't hard to drum up any number of great speakers to present to the local Victorian members, from Melbourne, interstate and overseas.
Western Australia and Perth is a different story. As some may know, Perth the capital of WA, is the most remote city in the world. It takes ~5 days to drive from Sydney to Perth, ~5 hours to fly, and just over 5 minutes for somebody from the East Coast of Australia to realise that people from Perth couldn't care less how far they are from everyone else ;)
One of the problems for the local Oracle user group though, is that it's darned hard to get non local talent to present in Perth. With a population of 1.5 million, there is only so many local presenters before you have to beg your grandmother to present again, and grandma likes Bill more than Larry. And in turn somehow a 5 hour flight isn't that attractive to people outside of Perth for a 45m presentation.
Another problem for the local group, and frustratingly so, is that plenty of Oracle talent visit Perth each month on business, who would make great presenters, but come and go before we get a chance to nab them for a 45m Oracle stand-up routine. Dag nab it!
So we'd like to make an open invite to anybody who knows they'll be in town or would like to visit, to drop us an email, and we'd love to slot you in to one of our monthly meetings. For the international speakers, don't forget that Perth is near the Margaret River wine region, has some of the best beaches in Australia, and makes a great tax-write-off for your next family holiday.
If you're interested I can be contacted at chrisdotmuiratsagecomputingdotcomdotau (replacing the "dot" and "at" with the appropriate symbols). We hope to hear from you soon.