From: Wednesday September 5, 2018, 12:30 pm
To: Wednesday September 5, 2018, 2:00 pm
Speaking on “The Changing Face of Retail”.
Since 1980, Russell Zimmerman has owned and operated the Spark's Shoes retail chain with his wife Marion. Spark's Shoes is a 75-year-old family business specialising in the fitting of children's footwear.
Russell became a Councillor of the Australian Retailers Association, New South Wales Division in 1995. He held the position of President of the NSW State Division from 2001-03. From 1997 he held the position of state delegate to the Australian Retailers Association National Council. He served as President of the Australian Retailers Association National Council from 2003-04. These positions are held in an honorary capacity. As National President of the Australian Retailers Association he represented Australian retail at the Federation of Asian Retailers Association in New Zealand, Beijing and Australia.
Being involved in a small business Russell brings a closer perspective of day to day issues as he has been in close contact with staff and customers as well as dealt with the managerial issues of operating and financing a Small Medium Enterprise.
In 2005 Russell became the Chair the Australian Merchants Payment Forum. The Australian Merchants Payment Forum represents merchants in Australia by liaising with the Reserve Bank of Australia, card schemes and other interested parties on all card payment issues. Due to Russell running his own retail outlets Russell has an overall view of all types of card payment transactions and issues that confront retailers irrespective of size of the merchant from the front of store to the back room workings.
Russell is an active member of the Rotary Club of Beecroft and has held various positions on its board. Russell was honoured with the award of a Paul Harris Fellow from the Rotary Club of Beecroft in 1990 for service to the community. Russell is a devoted family man, married to Marion. They have a son and a married daughter, and three granddaughters.
Russell was appointed as Executive Director of the ARA on 7 July 2009, in 2009 the Ara had 1,800 members the association has grown under Russell’s leadership and now has some 7,500 members ranging from Australia’s largest retailers to single store Mum & Dad retailers
Cnr Spring & Collins St, Melbourne VIC 3000