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November 2018

David Mitchell, departing South East Local Land Services Chair.

This will be my last circular column as Chair of South East Local Land Services. I have made the decision to stand down from the role now, a little ahead of schedule, as I feel that the organisation is in a good place and we have the right person, in Allison Harker (Yass), to lead the organisation into the future.

There are personal considerations also, I have been in the role since Local Land Services was created in October 2013. The role requires a lot of focus and travel and I am at a point where I need to spend more time with my family and managing my own farm business, which has been impacted by the drought.

I’m proud of what we have been able to achieve in the last five years. Local Land Services represented a profound shift in service delivery, four new Acts were created, replacing 14 older Acts, this provided a more supportive context and brought legislation up to date with contemporary practices and needs.

As a producer and someone who has been involved in rural extension and governance for some time, this made sense. In looking across the country and indeed around the globe, there is no better model for the delivery of these services than the one we’ve got here in NSW with its governance model and integrated service delivery.

In the South East we went a step further, reshaping our organisational structure, we have six dedicated local teams with a clear focus on being those boots on the ground that are there when it matters providing support and advice to our customers.

I’ll be the first to admit that there were bumps along the road, we haven’t always got things right the first time, but we always fronted up to the community, our partners and dealt with issues as they arose.

This is a philosophy that I am personally very proud of, it is an ethos that will help guide us and refine our customer focussed approach into the future.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your engagement and support in this start-up period. I’d also like to thank the dedicated staff who really make the organisation what it is. These people are passionate about what they do, helping customers and communities to achieve the best outcomes for all.

Wishing you all the best

Thank you.

David Mitchell.