Former University of New England student Peter Dennis is Armidale Regional Council’s new boss.
Council appointed Mr Dennis as their new chief executive at a closed meeting on Wednesday.
He will sign a five-year performance-based contract and will earn $320,000 a year.
Mr Dennis recently finished as chief executive of SEQWater in Queensland after four years.
He is on the Mackay Regional Council advisory board, is a conjoint professor at the University of Newcastle, and previously held the positions of general manager and chief operating officer of Hunter Water Corporation.
Council began recruiting for the position in October following the sudden resignation of Glenn Wilcox.
And a four-person panel conducted the final interviews on Saturday.
Dr Tiley said he was extremely impressed with the quality of applications.
“We received a number of excellent candidates from existing and former general managers and directors in local government, government and the private sector,” Dr Tiley said.
“It was an intense and challenging interview process and two very high calibre candidates emerged.
“One candidate subsequently withdrew leaving Mr Peter Dennis as the preferred candidate who the panel unanimously endorsed for the appointment as chief executive.”
Mr Dennis previously worked in Armidale on the water treatment plant upgrade project, which went on to win an engineering excellence award.
“I’m delighted to be appointed to the chief executive role,” Mr Dennis said.
“Having grown up in regional NSW and worked in many regional communities.
“I have a great appreciation of the challenges and opportunities that regional areas face in Australia.
“I am very much looking to work with community as well as the team at Armidale Regional Council to make the region an even better place to live and create further regional prosperity.“
The appointment is the first step in Council’s new organisational structure.
Mr Dennis will start January 30.