Scholarships ignite growth, opportunity for four local business women

News Update 8 August 2023
Economic Development

Four talented business women in the City of South Perth have received scholarships to help grow their business ventures with the highly regarded Curtin Ignition program.

The fully paid scholarships will give Sarah Yates (Our Ruby Girl), Maryann Tsai (Reach Her), Lois Keay-Smith (Career Wisdom) and Donna Lee Powell (DLP Life Design) an opportunity to take their ideas to the next level.

The partnership between the City and Curtin University will support these local entrepreneurs, providing an intensive education from 3-8 September 2023 to trial and prepare business ideas for the commercial environment.

Our Curtin Ignition scholarship recipients are:

Sarah Yates, Our Ruby Girl 

Support to create Our Ruby Girl Foundation for people living with disabilities to be given the opportunity for meaningful employment, skill development and micro-credentialing.

Maryann Tsai, Reach Her

Support for business planning and development of the Reach Her, social enterprise that aims to empower marginalised women to be employed or self-employed in the hospitality and baking industry, and supports their mental health and wellbeing.

Lois Keay-Smith, Career Wisdom

Creating a new initiative for ‘Reinventees’ -  people aged 50 years and over in the City of South Perth (and beyond), who are readying for their second act.

Donna Lee Powell, DLP Life Design

With the aim to revolutionise financial education, Donna’s platform will provide accessible and relatable information on a wide range of financial topics, including dealing with government agencies, money management, debt management, superannuation, insurances, investments, estate planning, and banking for those experiencing death, disability and divorce.

Congratulations to each of our Curtin Ignition scholarship recipients. 

This initiative is part of the City's Economic Development Plan to support local businesses and help local businesses grow.

To find out more, visit the Curtin University Ignition website.

For support or more information about local business initiatives, contact the City's Economic Development Officer via or subscribe to our monthly Business in Focus eNewsletter for the latest in local business news.

Mayor Greg Milner caught up with the City's four Curtin Ignition scholarship recipients - Lois Keay-Smith, Donna Lee Powell, Maryann Tsai and Sarah Yates.

Contact us

For more information, please contact the City.