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Barbara's Work in the Community

Barbara has supported the ‘tiny’ end of small business since 1995 when she coined the word ‘Micro’ and defined it as employing 5 or less. She founded the Micro Business Network (MBN) with 12 members and currently has 20,000 on the data base. In 1998 MBN incorporated Home Based Business Australia (HBBA).

Barb with Ron Clarke.JPG

Barbara with Olympian, Ron Clarke at the Australian Micro Business Awards


Barbara was a dedicated secondary Art teacher for over 20 years. She was renowned for running lunch time workshops where she encouraged students to further their creative interests by treating them as ‘fellow artists’.

Barbara has developed Biz-in-a-Box with the support of the Victorian Government and the Telematics Trust, to encourage students to develop their own micro businesses as an alternative career path.

Launch BIB.JPG

The Victorian Minister for Small Business, the Hon Louise Asher (centre) with Barbara, Mentone Grammar head staff and VCTA representative at the launch of Biz-in-a-Box


Barbara tours rural Victoria to present her business workshops and seminars; such townships as Wangaratta, Shepparton, Bendigo, Ballarat, Geelong and Ararat have all experienced her unique methods of presentation, where she ‘talks the language of the ordinary people’.


Barbara instigated the Australian Micro Business Awards to recognise and reward the sector for their achievements. Gabogrecan also holds numerous smaller events, where she brings together people from a wide range of backgrounds, to raise money for selected charities


The Brunches and Crazy Tea Ceremonies Barbara runs are booked out in advance. These events combine business networking for participants and run auctions to raise money for charities, including Uncle Bobs Club (Children’s Hospital) and the Cancer Council of Australia. However, smaller charitable groups that do not receive funding are also targeted to offer support. Through MCEI the charity Scope (previously the Spastic Society) receive support.


Presidents MCEI Tokyo.JPGInternational Presidents of MCEI from Osaka, Brussels, Geneva, Tokyo and Australia at the Tokyo World Congress

Barbara, together with Jack Wu, established the Marketing Communications Executive International Association to offer an International network to the small business sector in Australia. In their second year, Barbara and Jack went to Tokyo and put forward a bid to host the bi-annual World Congress in Melbourne. They won the bid and had 95 businesses from Geneva, Brussels, Osaka, Nagoya and Taipei spent a week in Melbourne attending a number of business events