Elections to the region’s peak business advisory body, Business Illawarra’s Regional Advisory Council, were held last night and have seen the elevation of a diverse array of business leaders to guide and inform the work of the advocacy group.

Newly elected president of the Illawarra Regional Advisory Council and Publican of The Illawarra Hotel, Ryan Aitchison said that he was excited to chair a refreshed group of business leaders that would inform strong regional advocacy for the next two years.

“Its an honour to be a part of an advisory council that truly reflects the diversity of the Illawarra’s business community and includes so many great businesspeople who are leaders in their own right,” said Mr Aitchison.

“I’ve been pleased to be a member of the Illawarra Regional Advisory Council for the last two years, where we oversaw strong advocacy and research – particularly in the areas of clean energy, affordable housing and defence industry.”

“On behalf of the Advisory Council, we look forward to expanding Business Illawarra’s strong advocacy for the region, shaping the policies of all levels of government, and celebrating business excellence throughout the year.”

“As a publican I am at the coalface of an industry that has been through challenging times of late, and I know well the issues faced across many businesses including workforce shortages, dropping consumer confidence and ongoing regulatory issues that we have to work hard to overcome.”

Executive Director of Business Adam Zarth said he welcomed the strong field of nominations to the Regional Advisory Council and looked forward to working with its members to drive tangible outcomes for the regional business community and the wider economy.

“Our newly elected Regional Advisory Council is a reflection of the quality and diversity of the Illawarra’s business community, and we are privileged to have our work informed and shaped by such an influential body,” said Mr Zarth.

“The next two years will be a time of immense opportunity for the Illawarra and I look forward to continuing our work to drive positive change in the region, and greater job creation and investment, in partnership with the 20 business leaders that comprise our Regional Advisory Council.”