Long-time Latrobe Valley resident Karen Cain will take the reins as Chief Executive Officer of the Latrobe Valley Authority.
An influential public servant and local leader, Ms Cain will use her experience in working collaboratively with cross-sector, agency and community groups to continue the Authority’s work supporting workers and businesses, cutting red tape and providing incentives for new business and industry seeking to expand or move to the region.
“The Latrobe Valley Authority will continue to work with local businesses, community groups and all levels of government to open doors for new industry and business and build a strong and vibrant future for our region,” Ms Cain said.
The Victorian Government established the Authority in November 2016 to bring together local people, industry, education providers and all levels of government to secure the economic, social and environmental future of the Latrobe Valley.
The immediate focus is to help workers and businesses affected by the closure of Hazelwood power station and to create new job opportunities. The Authority is supporting more than 200 families through the Worker Transition Service, with tailored support, advice and opportunities to retrain or find new jobs.
More than 80 business leaders have been engaged in discussions about expanding or establishing a presence in the Latrobe Valley, some with great potential for growing and diversifying the regional economy.
The Authority also is building long-term strength in the community, helping more than 100 local organisations to access funding to improve facilities and make sure the region continues to be a great place to live, work and visit.
“I have absolute faith in the strength and resilience of the Latrobe Valley community, and the Latrobe Valley Authority will continue to work hard to empower our community to create a place where generations will thrive,” Ms Cain said.
A Latrobe Valley resident for 23 years, Ms Cain has significant experience working across government, leading strategic innovation, and developing and implementing policy in Gippsland.
Her experience in developing and delivering on issues that reflect what matters to community and government leave her well prepared for this important role.
Ms Cain also has worked with families and the community as a principal in government schools in the Latrobe Valley for 11 years, including Woolum Bellum Koorie School in Morwell, Traralgon College Junior Campus, and Lowanna Secondary College in Newborough.
She has been a member of the Gippsland Regional Managers Forum for six years.
For the past 21 years, she has owned and operated a commercial beef farm with her husband at Boolarra South.