Diverse and experienced taskforce to lead the Inner West’s economic recovery

Thursday 2 July 2020

The newly created Inner West Recovery Taskforce has met for the first-time.

 The members are Clr Darcy Byrne (Mayor of the Inner West), Clr Louise Steer (Inner West Council – Stanmore Ward – Damun), Percy Allen (public policy economist), Erica Berchtold (CEO of the ICONIC), Mark Chapman (Inner West Business Inc.), Chrissy Flannagan (Chrissy’s Cuts and The Sausage Factory), Kerri Glasscock (Director Sydney Fringe Festival), Morris Hanna (President of Marrickville Chamber of Commerce), Greg Khoury (Chairman of Century Venues) and Monica Vardabasso (TAFE NSW).

Inner West Mayor Darcy Byrne, who proposed and chairs the taskforce, said he was proud, honoured and excited to be leading a group with so much experience and commitment to the Inner West.

“Given these unprecedented times, we are bringing together the best from small and large business, public policy, the arts, and vocational education and training to spearhead the local economic recovery in the Inner West,” said Mayor Byrne.

“This will not be like a standard Council committee, instead it will be a high-powered partnership between the private sector and local government to deal with the unprecedented challenges local businesses now face.

“More than 20,000 businesses call the Inner West home and the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every single one. The challenge is to therefore to explore new ideas and approaches to boost economic activity as local businesses reopen and emerge from lockdown,” said Mayor Byrne.

The Taskforce will run for 18 months and will provide a road map to recovery based on advice, support and information supplied from Council staff, government agencies and other key stakeholders.

Actions can be reported and revised on a weekly basis as part of a business recovery/reset plan.

Member Profiles

Percy Allen – Percy is a public policy economist and a former Secretary of the NSW Treasury. He has also chaired taskforces into various public policy, management and finance matters.

Percy is a longstanding member of the CEDA Economic Council on Economic Policy

Erica Berchtold – Erica comes with 20 years’ experience in retail, and currently is the CEO of the ICONIC (Australia’s largest fashion and sports retailer) and prior to that as Managing Director of Rebel Sport. She has also been a Director of Sydney FC for the past six years and was previously President of the Australia Sporting Goods Association.

Mark Chapman – Mark runs the Royal Hotel in Leichhardt and has been appointed as the representative of the Inner West Business Inc.

Chrissy Flanagan – Chrissy has working with the NSW Government for 17 years, but is best known across the Inner West as the founder and force behind Chrissy’s Cuts, The Sausage Factory and now Sausage Queen Brewing. Most recently she helped form Dully Locals, a collective of Dulwich Hill artisan producers, providores and makers that has been responsible for helping keep participating local businesses afloat during the COVID-19 crisis. Dully Locals brought in $5,000 in sales is its first five days of operation.

Kerri Glasscock – Kerri is the Director of the Sydney Fringe Festival and Venue 505. She brings 20 years of experience as a small business owner and operator in the hospitality and entertainment industry, as well as having sat on numerous boards in the Local and State Government sector.

Morris Hanna – Morris’s passion for the Inner West is reflected in the fact that he has been involved in local business for the past 35 years and has also represented the community as a Councillor and Mayor on the former Marrickville Council. Morris is the President of Marrickville Chamber of Commerce and brings a wealth of local knowledge and experience to the taskforce.

Greg Khoury – Greg is one of the most influential individuals in Sydney’s creative arts community. He is Chair of Century Venues, which runs the Enmore, Metro and Factory Theatres, some of the Inner West’s most iconic live performance spaces. Greg was also the Founding Director of The Sydney Fringe.

He has also demonstrated specialist knowledge and expertise in revitalising cultural businesses including live performance venues, precinct activation and business viability revitalisation, along with instigating new business and cultural enterprises.

Monica Vardabasso – Monica is the Head of Customer and Stakeholder Relations at TAFE NSW. She brings an extensive network and range of experience in vocational education and training, along with employment and career-change skills.

For media enquiries, contact Bill Hawker, Mayoral Media Officer, 9392 5685 or bill.hawker@innerwest.nsw.gov.au


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Page last updated: 02 Jul 2020