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Cohen Van der Velde appointed as Baw Baw Shire Director Strategy and Organisational Performance

Cohen Van der Velde appointed as Director Strategy and Organisational Performance by Baw Baw Shire Council.

By news@gippsland - 12th April 2023 - Back to News

Baw Baw Shire Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Cohen Van der Velde as Director Strategy and Organisational Performance. Following an extensive and highly competitive external recruitment process, Mr Van der Velde was successfully appointed and commenced in the role on 11 April 2023.

Cohen Van der Velde will oversee council's corporate strategy, people and culture, finance, family, children and community services

Cohen Van der Velde will oversee council's corporate strategy, people and culture, finance, family, children and community services

Notable achievements

Over the course of 5 years, Mr Van der Velde has been a valuable member of Baw Baw Shire's Executive Leadership Team guiding the Community Infrastructure Directorate through several notable achievements including:

  • Leading key policy changes such as the Capital Works Evaluation Policy, and refreshing the Long Term Infrastructure Plan to guide council decision-making
  • Leading the transition to a new Road Maintenance Contract which has seen an improvement in service delivery
  • Delivering the Leadership Symposia in 2018-19 to strengthen leadership capability

Mr Van der Velde is a qualified civil engineer and has worked in engineering design, construction, and project management roles predominantly within the local government sector.

Directors assigned

With a strong passion for developing high performing individuals, teams and workplace culture, Mr Van der Velde is a certified organisational coach, practitioner in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator and Life and Group Styles Inventory tools, as well as an accredited facilitator in engagement through the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) and holds an Executive MBA.

As Baw Baw's Director Strategy and Organisational Performance, Mr Van der Velde will lead council's Corporate Strategy, People and Culture, Finance, Family and Children Services and Community services divisions. Recruitment is currently underway to fill the position of Director Community Infrastructure. David Hair, previous Manager Infrastructure Assets and Recreation, will be acting Director Community Infrastructure until the role is permanently filled.

Excited for leadership!

CEO Mark Dupe said, "We are thrilled to welcome Cohen into his new position as Baw Baw's Director, Strategy and Organisational Performance. With 20 years' experience in the local government sector, Cohen is a highly regarded asset to Baw Baw Shire and has been exceptional in leading our Infrastructure Directorate for the past 5 years. Cohen brings a wealth of enthusiasm, knowledge, and insight into this new position and we congratulate him on his appointment."

Director Strategy and Organisational Performance, Cohen Van der Velde, "Over the last 5 years, it has been a pleasure and rewarding experience to lead a remarkable group of people that make up council's Community Infrastructure Directorate."

"I am looking forward to taking this experience into my new position as I lead a team of talented and hard working individuals within the Strategy and Organisational Performance Directorate, each of whom are committed to delivering best outcomes for the Baw Baw community." Mr Van der Velde

Pictures from Baw Baw Shire Council website.


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