AURUKUN mayor Keri Tamwoy has welcomed Ilario Sabatino to the role of chief executive officer at Aurukun Shire Council.
Originally from the Torres Strait and with Aboriginal heritage, Mr Sabatino is the council’s first Indigenous CEO.
He was previously the chief operating officer at Torres Strait Island Regional Council and the CEO at Napranum Aboriginal Shire Council and Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council.
Mr Sabatino’s career has included administrative roles with all three tiers of government, and he has been affiliated with Aurukun Shire Council through his local government networks.
Mr Sabatino has also been involved with supporting philanthropic organisations.
“I have a keen interest in advancing First Nations’ community development and working with the mayor, councillors and administration team to deliver on council’s business objectives that are congruent with community expectations,” Mr Sabatino said.
“I am fortunate that council has given me the opportunity to come to Aurukun in this leadership capacity and I am keen on progressing and supporting the council by value-adding both strategically and operationally to what has already been achieved and leading with our team the implementation on the direction set by council in moving forward.
“There are multiple issues and challenges including better coordination of government services coming into the community and purpose-led investments which require a sense of increased accountability and responsibility that not only focuses on financial return on investment but also return on the service recipient’s expectations.
“I understand the enduring social and economic challenges for First Nations communities that have major effects on the provision, the appropriateness and accessibility to quality infrastructure and services and I am under no illusion that will change overnight because a lot of issues are complex and intergenerational that will require all parties’ involvement.”
Mr Sabatino was appointed after the sudden resignation of CEO John Thomas, who lasted just one month in the role before resigning due to personal reasons.
Before that, Bernie McCarthy had been the chief executive officer of Aurukun Shire Council for more than nine years.