Former Queensland Airports boss Chris Mills has been appointed transition CEO of the City’s new controlled entity, Experience Gold Coast.
Mr Mills, whose experience includes tourism and leisure, events, aviation, venue management and property development, has been tasked with bringing together the five existing entities over the coming months.
Last month, Council resolved to amalgamate the functions currently delivered by HOTA, Destination Gold Coast, Major Events Gold Coast, Study Gold Coast and Placemakers.
Council’s decision will result in about $6.8 million in direct savings annually. These savings will be reinvested back into the entity for tourism, events, arts and education programs.
A $1.5 million community arts fund will also be established to support arts and cultural programming in the city.
In accordance with Council’s decision, City of Gold Coast CEO Tim Baker appointed Mr Mills along with a transition advisory committee made up of board members of the existing entities.
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said Chris was a natural choice for the role of transition CEO as he is a city leader with experience and passion for the Gold Coast.
“Chris has experience across the relevant sectors, knows the Gold Coast and its markets intimately and has a proven track record,” Mayor Tate said.
Experience Gold Coast will be charged with driving visitation growth and economic investment.
Mr Mills said he saw the creation of the new organisation as an opportunity to align all the fantastic work being done by these five unique entities.
“They are already delivering amazing outcomes for the city and I think together they will be unstoppable,” Mr Mills said.
Mr Mills will commence as transition CEO of Experience Gold Coast on 13 March and has been appointed for a six-month term. The Hon. Rob Borbidge has been appointed as the Chair of the transition advisory committee, along with the following directors from the existing entities:
Mayor Tom Tate
Tim Baker (City CEO)
Jackie Cross (MEGC)
Clark Kirby (Destination GC and MEGC)
Rebecca Frizelle (Destination GC)
Adam Twemlow (Destination GC)
Cameron Costello (HOTA)
Danielle Weiss (HOTA)
Marion Charlton (Placemakers)
Karen Dickinson (Study GC)
Council will appoint the board of directors for Experience Gold Coast in the coming months with the board then completing the recruitment process for the CEO of the new entity.