Leighton takes the reins as Baw Baw Shire chief executive

Baw Baw Shire Council appointed Alison Leighton as the organisation’s chief executive on Wednesday night.

Ms Leighton will join council from her position as chief operating officer at Mornington Peninsula Shire.

In her previous role, she managed the delivery of an extensive capital works program and a long-term infrastructure maintenance service contract, oversaw council’s planning and building service and lead the shire’s response to climate change.

Baw Baw Shire mayor Joe Gauci said council was confidant Ms Leighton would do an outstanding job.

“In addition to Ms Leighton’s local government expertise, she is a qualified engineer, an alumni of Harvard Business School, an MBA graduate and a member of the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia,” he said.

“Ms Leighton joins us with over 15 years of progressive leadership experience in infrastructure, planning, operations, program and service delivery and business transformation.”

Ms Leighton said she was looking forward to leading the organisation to identify opportunities for innovation, enhance customer service and productivity improvements.

“Baw Baw Shire Council is a unique municipality with a strong agricultural heritage, extraordinary natural assets, productive landscapes and many vibrant towns and villages,” she said.

“Given the projected population growth, increasing community expectations and the need to make the absolute best of the ratepayer dollar, the shire is at a pivotal point in its history.

“I look forward to supporting council in addressing these challenges and in embracing the opportunities presented by innovation, digital transformation, customer focus and community capacity building.”

Mr Gauci also paid tribute to interim chief executive Phil Cantillor for his “exceptional” work leading the organisation for the past five months.

Ms Leighton will commence as chief executive of Baw Baw Shire on Monday, 21 August.