Inner West Council Administrator and Interim General Manager
Mr Richard Pearson has been appointed as Administrator of Inner West Council and Ms Vanessa Chan as the Interim General Manager following the merger of Ashfield, Leichhardt and Marrickville Councils.
Mr Pearson will be responsible for Council decisions until new Councillors are elected in September 2017.
A former Deputy Secretary of the Department of Planning and Environment, Mr Pearson has over 25 years’ experience in town planning, organisational change and reform and the administration of government agencies.
Mr Pearson has close links with local government having started his career at Wollongong and Byron councils and later managing the regional offices of the Department of Planning. This involved front line liaison with local councils in developing their local environmental plans and preparation of regional strategies.<
Recently Mr Pearson has been running his own planning and policy consultancy and was a delegate to the NSW Government in the examination of merger proposals as part of the current local government reform program. He has also chaired a number of public inquires and other key public forums across the state.
“As a resident of Summer Hill for over 20 years I have a close knowledge and affinity with the local area and am looking forward to being part of building a stronger local government for the community,’ Mr Pearson said.
“There are great opportunities ahead to build a new council for the Inner West which will see better service delivery, improvements in infrastructure and cost savings for local residents.”
As Interim General Manager Ms Vanessa Chan will oversee day to day operations of the Council.
“I am pleased to have been appointed as the interim General Manager of the new Inner West Council and am committed to working with the Administrator to build a great Council for the people of the Inner West,” Ms Chan said.
“I am looking forward to working with all the staff across the three former councils to ensure that we provide the best possible standards of service and infrastructure for the local area.”
Ms Chan served as the General Manager of Ashfield Council and has worked in local government for over 15 years. She is recognised as an expert practitioner in corporate strategy, governance and organisational development.
Her background also includes substantial community engagement and social planning in both government and the community sector and she has extensive experience in business excellence and performance improvement expertise with particular interest in multidisciplinary local government programs.
She has been teaching strategy and contemporary leadership at the Australian Centre for Excellence in Local Government and Centre for Local Government UTS for over a decade.
During her time as General Manager of Ashfield Council the organisation was recognised by the NSW Government as a leading practitioner in integrated planning and reporting and was ranked by TCorp as one of the top 12% of NSW Councils for financial sustainability. The Council was also consistently ranked as one of top performing Sydney councils in processing development applications and received a Planning Excellence Award in 2015.